Does cohousing work for families? We think so!
Whether you’re a parent of babies, young children or teenagers, there are many benefits to raising children in a cohousing community. Families often feel that their children have more freedom and gain greater independence from living in cohousing.
Friends on the doorstep
Shared neighbours are sociable neighbourhoods! Children in cohousing communities often have a lot more freedom than in other places. They can go out and instantly find friends to play with in communal areas, without parents having to organise formal playdates. Group meals and get-togethers offer opportunities to get to know people of all ages.
Safe, communal play spaces
Shared, car-free spaces allow children to play outdoors safely with their friends. In colder months or in wet weather, the common house acts as a multipurpose, indoor space for friends to meet up. Because everyone knows their neighbours, parents generally feel happier letting their children play outdoors, or under another person’s supervision. Angel Yard’s communal allotment and forest garden are also brilliant spaces for children to spend time together, playing or helping out.
Parenting gets shared
Families often appreciate the additional support that cohousing brings. Couples and single parents have other people to turn to if they need help, and it’s easy to take turns with childcare if needed. Many parents also find the regular, shared mealtimes a relief because it saves them cooking every night of the week!
Image by David Butler of Marmalade Lane Cohousing, Cambridge.
Diverse role models
By living within a diverse, close-knit neighbourhood, children are exposed to a range of role models of mixed ages and backgrounds. This can help them appreciate different types of people with a range of skills, interests and occupations, and become more accepting of others.
Opportunities to contribute
Communal chores such as maintaining the allotment, babysitting younger children, cooking or washing up after shared meals offer young people a chance to contribute to their community in a meaningful way and make a difference to other people’s lives, from an early age.
Hear it from the kids!
Interested in hearing it from the children themselves? We love this video, produced by Lancaster Cohousing, featuring some of their youngest cohousing community members.