RareBirds Housing Co-operative celebrates 10-year anniversary with open house

10 years of RareBirds house

This month marks the 10-year anniversary of the RareBirds Housing Cooperative, and residents of the sustainable living project are celebrating by hosting an open house.

The RareBirds Housing Co-operative is a unique way of living. The residents each split the cost of the house six ways. Each person or couple has their own room, sitting area and bathroom, but they share other living spaces like the kitchen and living room.

Daphane Nelson, co-operative developer of RareBirds housing, said that the residents of the home live a collaborative lifestyle and will often have meals together.

She also said another unique property of RareBirds is the focus on renewable energy. The house has a grid-tiered solar system.

Mary Jordan is one of the original residents of RareBirds and is the only founder that still lives in the house. She said her life would be a lot different if she had not decided to get involves with the project.

“People who have lived here have commented that they learned a lot — and they learned a lot about themselves, and they learned a lot about other people,” she said.

“Living in a community really requires you to stretch and be open minded and collaborate more than maybe we're used to in other relationships.”

Jordan said she is excited to share the progress and community that her and the other founders created at the open house.

She said the home started as a place for seniors to create their own community, but is now open to anyone.

“We were living in homes and our nests were empty — realizing that this is really quite unsustainable — wouldn't it make more sense if it was more of a sharing kind of thing,” Jordan said.

On May 24, RareBirds residents are inviting people to join them at their house to learn about co-operative housing and the story of how RareBirds began.

The open house will run from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at the house on West Battle Street.

Nelson will be facilitating a panel with other groups who wish to start other projects at the open house as well.

They are asking people to pre-register if they are interested in attending.

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