Re: Community dinner economics
From: Angie McGowan (
Date: Sun, 7 Aug 94 23:32 CDT
>We (Sharingwood) is looking for information about how groups charge for 
>community dinner meals and do food purchasing?  Do you have a group 
>account, do cooks buy the food and get reimbursed?  Does every one who 
>eats pay each day, weekly or monthly and how much is charged?
At Cascade Cohousing several of us have finished our houses and have moved
in, and some residents are renting.  We've got the common house to lock up
but there's no kitchen yet.  We have a common meal once a week and take it
in turns to host this in our houses.  When the common house is ready we
will eat there and will probably have dinner parties more frequently.

In the meanwhile, the weekly meal alternates between Mondays and Wednesdays
to give people the maximum chance of attending.  Each particpating adult is
on the meals roster and if people forget to sign up, then they get written
in and can swap around later.  A particpating adult is anyone who wants to
be a regular at the dinner parties and includes residents, non-resident
members, older and adult children of members and residents, and other close
friends of members or residents.  Each person's turn comes round about once
every 2 1/2 months.

The cook buys all the food, cooks the meal and clears up. Although only
some of us are vegetarian, we decided to make all our common meals
meat-free, so as to accommodate everyone more easily. No money changes
hands, although this may change once we start having more frequent meals in
the common house.  Non-residents arrange privately with a resident to host
the meal at a house on site.  Non-cooks such as visiting friends, rellies,
or prospective new members are welcome to eat with us, and there is often
one or two extras.  This casual taking of turns to host a dinner party has
felt fair so far.  

We've found that one's turn to cook might have become a sort of currency. 
At least one person has won an extra turn at cooking in a wager!  (Or did
that person lose the bet?).

Bon appetit
Angie McGowan
Cascade Cohousing, Tasmania.

Angie McGowan
Cultural Heritage Section
Parks and Wildlife Service
Tasmania Australia
Intl ph +61-02-336596
Dom ph (002) 336596

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