Re: Annual Retreats
From: Mac Thomson (macheartwoodcohousing.com)
Date: Tue, 25 May 2010 06:29:10 -0700 (PDT)
I would also say that our annual retreats are an imporant part of the glue that 
holds us together.  Here is what our Meeting agreement says about retreats:

RETREAT 
Purpose: To reconsider the "Big Picture" topics (where we're at as a community, 
the nature of the community, and our Core agreements) and to work on core 
community skills (communication, conflict resolution, etc.).
Authority to Call Meeting: Steering or Process & Communication team. Retreats 
are held annually.
Decisions Made: None, unless previously authorized by community.
Essential Roles: Facilitator to guide the process to accomplish the stated 
agenda purpose(s).
Participation: Members only. The team calling the retreat may grant exceptions 
for outside facilitators and other guests under special circumstances.


And here are answers to your questions:

> 1) How long does the retreat usually last?  (if "a weekend", when does it 
> start/end?)

Friday evening: intro and Heartwood Movie (photo and video highlights from the 
past year)
Saturday: usually something separate for kids and adults
Saturday evening: dinner together followed by Gong show (silly and serious 
talent show)
Sunday: wrap up at noon or maybe mid-afternoon 

> 
> 2) Is it held on-site or off-site?
on-site

> 
> 3) What percentage, more of less, of members attend?  (Half?  2/3rds?  etc)
Pretty much 100%.  This is our best attended event of the year with a very high 
expectation of everyone being there.

> 
> 4) How much do you budget for it, if you know?
About $500 per year for food and $2000 every 2 years for outside facilitation.  
Every other year we facilitate it ourselves and every other year we hire an 
outside facilitator.


The fun activities for kids an adults (Heartwood Movie and Gong Show) are the 
same time and format every year.  The actual content of the retreat varies from 
year to year, but pretty much always deals with bigger, universal issues like 
relationship, community, communications, etc. and not particular issues we 
might be working with at the time.

Cheers,
Mac


-- 
Mac Thomson

Heartwood Cohousing
Southwest Colorado
http://www.heartwoodcohousing.com


"Have the gumption to live differently AND the sense to let everyone else live 
differently."
**********************************************************



On May 24, 2010, at 9:40 PM, cohousing-l-request [at] cohousing.org wrote:

> Date: Mon, 24 May 2010 14:16:00 -0400
> From: Muriel Kranowski <murielk [at] vt.edu>
> Subject: Re: [C-L]_ process people and product people
> To: Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at] cohousing.org>
> Message-ID: <6.2.1.2.1.20100524140931.05bf6ce0 [at] pop.vt.edu>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"; format=flowed
> 
> We used to have excellent retreats when there were fewer of us and our 
> group needs were more obvious, that is, during the development and 
> build-out phases. They've pretty much petered out since then. I'd love to 
> hear about successful retreats that long-time-running communities hold on a 
> regular basis.
> 
> 1) How long does the retreat usually last?  (if "a weekend", when does it 
> start/end?)
> 
> 2) Is it held on-site or off-site?
> 
> 3) What percentage, more of less, of members attend?  (Half?  2/3rds?  etc)
> 
> 4) How much do you budget for it, if you know?
> 
> Plus anything else that you think makes your retreats successful and fun.
> 
> Thanks!
>   Muriel Kranowski
>   Shadowlake Village Cohousing
>   Blacksburg, VA
> 
> At 10:51 AM 5/24/2010, Laura Fitch wrote:
> 
>> My suggestion which is good for forming and built communities:
>> Commit to well-designed yearly retreats that have a big chunk of time
>> dedicated to both process and product - and food, and fun!  It is a "shot in
>> the arm" for our community "Pioneer Valley Cohousing" and makes the rest of
>> the year run smoothly because of the "trust" and "connection" that this
>> yearly event reinforces.
> 


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