Cohousers Find a Home Away from Home

A very nice thing about cohousing is that when you travel you can always find a place that feels like home. This summer my family visited the West Coast and I knew right away that we had to check out the Windsong Cohousing community in Langley, BC.

We had heard many great things about this community which was built in 1996 and was the first cohousing community to be built in Canada. Our visit there went far beyond our expectations. What an inspiration! It is such a beautiful and inviting building and we were greeted by a very friendly bunch of people who showed us around and answered our questions. They also told us stories about their experiences living in a cohousing community. For example, one woman told me that her children grew up at Windsong and they cannot imagine living any other way. Many children growing up in a cohousing community are naturally open to different cultures and languages and find it easy to socialize with people of all ages. Both children and adults also learn how to solve conflicts through collaborative and non-violent communication.

We could tell the people at Windsong really belonged to a community. Children played together in the yard outside or in the playroom inside. A couple of neighbours had coffee together in the gathering space outside their units. In the common house kitchen some members were preparing a community meal for the evening. To get an idea of their experiences, please watch the inspiring short video below.

Visiting Windsong, meeting with its members and hearing stories from families who lived there for over 15 years made us realize how important our participation in Prairie Spruce Commons is.

Malin

Prairie Spruce: A Place Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Where Everybody Knows Your Name by Prairie Spruce Cohousing
Photo courtesy of Nick Erwin on Flickr

In today’s common suburbanism, it’s far too easy to live an anonymous, solitary life. Get in your car, open the garage door, drive to work, do the 9-to-5, drive back home, open the garage, close the garage, flick on the TV…

But there’s an alternative! Imagine being able to walk or bike to and from work downtown, at the University of Regina, or at the General Hospital, and then coming home to a community where everyone knows your name and considers you an important part of their lives. This is the vision I and many of my future neighbours have for Prairie Spruce Cohousing.

I’m looking forward to greeting and having regular conversations with my fellow residents on my way to my own private condo unit. I’m looking forward to having my spirits lifted by my friends and neighbours. I’m looking forward to activities inside and outside of Prairie Spruce Common House. The opportunity to take part in community meals, for example, will give me free time to spend with my family or to go for a walk beside Wascana Lake before supper. When I leave on a vacation, I’ll know with certainty that my home and property will be secure and well taken care of  since I’ll personally know everyone in the building.

There are but some of the meaningful advantages to life in cohousing and I’m sure I’ll discover more!

Murray