RE: [C-L] cohousing for older people
From: Forbes Jan (
Date: Wed, 11 Jul 2001 07:46:02 -0600 (MDT)
Thanks for this Rowena. 

Having looked through the list archives I'd actually put Cambridge Cohousing
on my initial itinerary, which was for twelve to fifteen communities in
North America only.  Another one high on my list is Winslow Cohousing.

I still hope to visit some North American communities with older members.
Whatever I do will have to be negotiated with the funding body.  

I'll need to be careful to choose communities that are going to be the most
informative, as in having a high proportion of older people such as
Cambridge Cohousing does.  And policies and procedures in place that aim to
deal with some of the issues or potential issues, such as the one you
mention about setting aside a percentage of the housing for specific
household types.

Has anyone tried documenting how well the Cambridge Cohousing community is
working for older and younger members alike?  If not, I'd certainly like the
opportunity to give it a go. 

I'd appreciate hearing from other groups who have a number of older members
and would be interested in having me visit.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Rowenahc [SMTP:rowenahc [at]]
> Sent: Wednesday, 11 July 2001 10:11
> To:   cohousing-l [at]
> Subject:      RE: [C-L]_Fw: [C-L] cohousing for older people
> There have been discussions on the list here about issues for communities
> that have a high proportion of older members.  I remember one post that I
> particularly liked, said that in their community people aged over 80 were
> exempt from work.
> There are a number of older people who do like to live in segregated
> communities and there are huge numbers of such communites around.
> However,
> many of us older folk do not want to live segregated from others and part
> of
> the appeal of cohousing was its diversity in this respect!  When Cambridge
> Cohousing started we attracted an older demographic group with only a
> couple
> of families with young children.  Because those of us who wanted to live
> in
> a mixed-age community were concerned about this trend we deliberately set
> aside 30% minimum of the units for families with children under 15.  We
> still have a substantial number of older folks - the oldest in their 80s -
> but we also have a flock of youngsters, several of whom have been born
> here.
> As for work - the oldest among us still participate in such things as
> cooking, reshelving the library books, and committee work that does not
> involve heavy lifting!
> Rowena
> CambridgeCohousing
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