Re: Achieving age diversity
From: Rob Sandelin (
Date: Mon, 6 Nov 2006 11:22:38 -0800 (PST)
One of the first community things we built at Sharingwood was the
playground. We had 2 kids at the time. Many cohousing groups that want to
invite families with children put less energy into child support activities
than might be useful, and sometimes this sends an unintentional message to
parents that this is not a good place for kids. For instance, is there a
community play structure on your plans? Is there childcare available at
meetings? Is there potluck food that is interesting to kids?  Are kids
warmly welcomed or ignored?  Can young families, who have lots of time
constraints, really be a part of your group, or are your participation
expectations too high? For example, all day meetings on a Saturday seldom
will be attractive to parents with kids under the age of 4, especially if
both parents work and thus its just another work day away from the kids.
Most people put their family first, work second, and cohousing somewhere
third or lower. So families might not show up until the expectations for
involvement are more doable. I had one parent tell me once, "cohousing is a
great idea, but I couldn't do the hours".  

Rob Sandelin
Naturalist, Writer
The Environmental Science School
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