Re: Presenters and Volunteers needed for Online Affordable Conference
From: Lynne MARKELL (
Date: Mon, 9 Dec 2019 11:26:03 -0800 (PST)
So glad you are doing this. I live in Ottawa and we have been unable to find 
any government programs to reduce the costs of cohousing so far.  A few 
municipalities in Canada have helped by waiving local development fees or 
leasing/ donating land. 
The big need here is affordable rental housing and so there are few provincial 
or federal programs to help homeowners. 
Our cohousing project is for older adults and seniors and there are lots of 
requests for rental units. However as a new cohousing group, we do not have the 
means or reputation to borrow money to create even a few rental units.  The 
required down payment would have to come from our members who are already 
concerned about the costs involved in cohousing.

If you are looking for presenters, consider someone from the Cambridge 
Cohousing as they have three separate "owners" of some of their units in order 
to provide housing for special groups. I thought it was ingenious as these 
non-profit organizations buy the units and then manage the rentals. Apparently 
it works out well.  I do think partnerships are a big answer to the affordable 
cohousing problem.
We have been through a lot over three years to creat our community and I have 
learned that developing cohousing in a big city as opposed to a small town is 
quite different. The context is important. Town councils, local media, service 
clubs, business groups, and churches in a small town are more supportive of a 
housing project that will help their local citizens. They may know the founders 
and certainly will know them more if they network and get stories written about 
them in the local media. This is my experience involved in community economic 
development, social enterprise, and co-operative development. Rural areas and 
small towns understand community more than big cities.
SO solutions may have to be divided into different community contexts. I am 
sure that cohousing developers have noticed a difference as well.
President and co-founder,
Convivium Cohousing Co-operative 

Lynne Markell, 
Lmarkell [at]
(613) 842-5222

> On Dec 9, 2019, at 10:33 AM, Karen Gimnig <karencohous [at]> wrote:
> Calling for Presenters and Volunteers! We are looking for experts in the
> field of affordable cohousing for our upcoming Affordable Conference on
> Affordable Cohousing. This will be on online conference, no travel needed
> (see, its affordable!) and presenters will receive free conference
> registration with access to recordings of all sessions.
> If you would like to present on any aspect of affordable cohousing, please
> fill out the proposal form here <>. You
> need not be a cohousing professional to apply. New and unproven ideas are
> welcome. We know we need affordable cohousing and we know we will need both
> knowledge and creativity to get there. Proposals due 12/31/2019.
> We are also looking for a handful of great volunteers to help us host zoom
> rooms for the conference. We need your friendly face and zoom skills to
> make our first ever online conference run smoothly. Apply here
> <>. Applications due 12/31/2019
> Presenter Proposals:
> Volunteer application:
> We're looking forward to a great conference.  Registration will open early
> in 2020.
> -- 
> Karen Gimnig
> Associate Director
> The Cohousing Association of the US
> 678-705-9007
> _________________________________________________________________
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