The purpose of the survey is to explore the public’s awareness of, and interest in the Prairie Spruce Commons cohousing project. Your feedback will help us understand how you relate and perceive the Prairie Spruce Commons project and community. For example, you may be new to the concept of cohousing and would like to know more. On the other hand, you might already be interested in becoming a member, but cannot afford purchasing a unit. Or then again, you might love the concept of cohousing, but you don’t want to move away from your current house and neighbourhood.
Knowing where people stand on the spectrum of interest is critical to our own understanding of the market and the planning of future community building events. Based on your responses and new ideas, we want to plan events that will reach people in Regina and encourage them to think about the benefits of community life, including the cohousing option. We are also interested in hearing what barriers keep people from becoming members in Prairie Spruce Commons.
The survey will take less than 10 minutes to complete and it is completely anonymous unless you choose to add your name and contact information.
We really value your participation regardless of your interest or knowledge about the project. We would also greatly appreciate if you could help us spread the word about the survey and our project. Please access the survey through this link: surveymonkey.com/s/W6LVLHP and please send the link to anyone who you think would be interested! We hope to receive all responses before December 20. Of course, we are always open to receiving your questions, comments and feedback at anytime via our contact page.
The first cohousing community was started in Denmark in the 1960s in part from the belief that “it takes a village to raise a child”. When Bodil Graae, Danish author and journalist, published an article in 1967 called “Children Should Have One Hundred Parents”, the benefit of cohousing became clear. Those benefits are all the more poignant today.
Many children today grow up in large cities far away from their extended family. Families are also generally smaller today than they used to be. Individuals and families benefit from the help, support and the feeling of “belonging” that a nearby extended family may give. Cohousing communities can act as that oft missing extended family in our increasingly isolated daily lives.
Children in a cohousing community grow up with many people of different ages and cultures around them. This is a unique advantage because these children will grow up to be open minded and social, and with an interest in and respect for people of all ages and cultures. These children will also have many role models who may teach, mentor and inspire them throughout their childhood and beyond.
A cohousing community also provides safe areas such as play rooms, craft rooms, gardens and outdoor play areas where children can interact with each other and learn at the same time. These facilities generally reduce the need for families to enrol in extra activities outside of the community during the week, which then allows more time for families to be together. When activities such as swimming classes and soccer practice do take the children outside the home, families can take turns transporting children.
As a parent, I’m really excited about the opportunities that cohousing and Prairie Spruce Commons will provide. For my little one: access to awesome shared spaces, in-community friends to play with and additional non-parent mentors. For myself, the shared parenting resources, babysitting and the additional quality time for myself and my family means less stress and a happier lifestyle. Win-win!
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.