Suvana Cohousing continues to look for a site and gain new cocreators to craft our vision.
Last year at our AGM we agreed to form an unincorporated association to carry our work forward until such time as we receive further grants and need to have an active limited company.
Our current committee consists of:
- Tejasvini (chair)
- Vimaladipa (secretary)
- Satyanandi (treasurer)
- Jeremy Peters
Many thanks also to Ray Brown and Maitrivajri who were involved for part of the year. We are looking for a membership secretary and more cocreators to get involved at this level and also to join us.
In fact, we decided earlier this year that we need to increase our membership, particularly of those interested in buying properties in Suvana. Without enough purchasers, the sums do not add up and we would not be able to provide the accommodation we would like to for Triratna retirees who need rental accommodation. We would also like a multi-generational cohousing project and so need to be able to attract younger people, which might also need thought and possibly subsidy. Topics to be explored!
Currently we have 19 [now 20!] households signed up, but as a result of wanting to increase our membership, we are embarking on a publicity campaign which Jeremy is spearheading. We’d like to record interviews with any cocreators who are willing to talk about what inspires them about the project, and use short video clips especially on Instagram to enthuse and inform people who may want to join us. The first four are in! There will also be other interviews, articles and various forms of communications to grow membership.
I was interviewed recently by Jnanavaca, a senior Triratna Order Member from London, about community living. More in the next blog post.
At the same time, we are involved with an application from the Abhayaratna Trust to the Windhorse Trust for funding to carry out market research among Triratna Order members to find out what housing need exists among them, what interest there is in cohousing, and whether there is interest for investment, particularly to help Triratna retirees. We aren’t only appealing to people involved with Triratna, but that is where we have links and are able to easily direct market research. We would like to attract anyone who would like to join a community inspired by loving kindness, generosity, simplicity, contentment and awareness.
The results of this research will assist on several fronts: spreading the word about the project, and using it as a basis for discussions with all our stakeholders: site owners, planners, developers, financers, neighbours.
At our April cocreators’ meeting we had a very interesting presentation from Frances Wright, community housing officer for the developer TOWN, who are involved in a number of cohousing developments and also have part of the contract for developing infrastructure at Hartree, the Cambridge North East development due to happen over the next 5 -20 years. Frances outlined an early possibility for our group in part of a larger building which could also house another cohousing group – and potentially share facilities with us – and possibly life sciences companies on the ground floor.
Another cocreator event was a visit to Cannock Mill Cohousing – very interesting and we will be discussing some of our impressions, inspirations and so on at the AGM.
We are actively looking for more cocreators and people to be involved in shaping our community. We still have most of the work ahead of us, but with a promising development in a city like Cambridge, it’s a very worthwhile project in which to put our energy.