|Re: Membership selection||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Larry Israel (lisraelaa.net)|
|Date: Fri, 22 Nov 1996 23:21:15 -0600|
Marty Roberts asked: > I am curious if any of the built communities out there ever experienced a > situation something like this before you were built: > > *You have only a few units not spoken for > *You feel there are not enough children or young families in the community > *You have people interested in joining the community or being associate > members or on a waiting list that do not fit this profile. > > How were such people handled? Or any ideas on how you might handle such a > situation? My answer is very similar to what Zev Paiss said. Hopefully you have forseen this possibility and created some restrictions on membership, *before* the people themselves were on board. (Or else you've decided that you can live with whatever household mix comes your way). We didn't have hardly any children for the first several years, and just kept hoping and trying to get them. In addition to the usual targeted membership outreach, we took two actions: (1) We specified the percentage of the units which would be 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom, 3 bedroom, and 4 bedroom. This was based on the mix of household sizes that we wanted to achieve. There may have been some flexibility to these. Later, when we had land and knew how many units there would be, the percentages were translated into numbers of units of each size. In the end, before construction began, we had several households on the waiting list who wanted 1 or 2 bedroom units, but our plan was fixed and they knew it. Before long (still before construction), we found households that bought the remaining 3 and 4 bedroom units. These larger units, of course, are more likely to be taken by households that have kids, tho' not for sure. (2) We allocated some membership slots to households that included children. It's been so long ago that I can't remember the specifics, but it worked roughly like this: We will reserve 6 slots; our community will have 23 units; so the maximum number of childless households we will allow as members is 17. This was done because we felt that we needed to set some minimum standards, beyond which we would not go, for the makeup of the community we were creating. This was done fairly early on. All prospective members were informed of these policies, and knew if it could affect their membership status. In fact, it never came down to turning anyone away or even got very close. Ultimately, we got plenty of children in our group. Once our project got to a certain point where it looked like a nearly sure thing *to outsiders* (after we got the land, and the approvals were nearly assured), people started joining our group in droves, including households with kids. Half our households have children. Without having a policy that sets a clear quantitative goal and specific actions, I think it would have been unfair for us to refuse an associate or prospective member. Sure, we could have cut it off to anyone new at whatever point in time we wanted, saying we're only taking households with kids. That would be another option for how to deal with it. But once they were already involved with the group, changing the rules and saying, "no, we're sorry," would, I think, have been unethical. Larry Israel Puget Ridge Cohousing Seattle WA
- Membership selection MartyR707, November 15 1996
- Re: Membership selection Nitsan Vardi, November 24 1996
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