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Pre 2012 house vision

Purpose and structure

We are an easy-going intentional community house that started about 14 years ago. Since September 2007, the house operates on a non-profit basis. Extra money is donated to charity – currently our focus is sponsoring the Veggie Challenge, a charitable project that assists people who want to try a vegetarian or vegan diet. Our house also offers rent credits to residents who are keen to volunteer on this project.

The overall vision is an environmental/spiritual house-community with a focus on selfless service.

Purpose

• To promote a healthy vegetarian lifestyle as an important way to preserve wilderness and reduce pollution. (a vegetarian diet requires seven times less land than a standard NA diet).
• To explore eating and living in a way that best honours the Earth (such as local organic foods, reducing use of plastic, and promoting bicycles).
• To value animals and people with compassion and dignity.
• To create an environment that nurtures spiritual understanding and insight.
• To practice and support selfless heart-felt service (to others, Earth, God, etc).
• To explore ways to make community living easy, simple and enjoyable (such as time-saving ways to share cleaning and cooking).

Features

We are located on a quiet street just west of Ossington and south of Bloor (1 block from Ossington subway station). We have a large tree-shaded front porch, backyard garden, and comfortable common spaces. Our three-storey house has rads and a gas stove. There are seven bedrooms and two bathrooms. High speed internet is included in the pricing. There is a community computer available in the basement. We recently purchased an infrared cedar sauna for the house using our house fund money.

Environmental features include using Bullfrog power (sustainable electricity supplier), energy-efficient fridge, front load washing machine, clothes line for drying, low flush toilets, efficient fireplace insert where on cool nights we can burn scrap wood that would otherwise be trucked to landfill, a garden that provides greens, herbs, beans, peas, berries, grapes, and other edibles. We also have a low-on-the-food-chain vegetarian (vegan-friendly) kitchen with an emphasis on organics and locally-grown foods. There are large shade trees in the front and back and we have two kinds of ivy growing out our south-facing side wall.

In our kitchen, basic food ingredients are shared, but everyone has some space in the fridge and cupboards for personal beverages, breads, packaged cereal, snacks, and other convenience foods. When people feel like cooking they generally make some extra for others.

Since June 2010, we have started a new vegetarian meal sharing system. Each of the seven people who live here cooks one night a week.

We have monthly house meetings.

Structure

The house operates on a non-profit basis. Rental amounts pay for the fixed costs (insurance, mortgage, taxes, repairs, renovations, internet, and basic phone line). All of the rest of the money goes towards charitable projects. Currently we are sponsoring the Veggie Challenge.

House fund
$35 a month ($250 starting May 2012) goes into a house fund managed by the house fund treasurer. Residents decide how to spend the money. Currently the fund is used for floor cleaning, kitchen equipment, plants, decorating, etc.

Rent – The base amount is around $425/month and includes everything (utilities, internet, and a basic land line for outgoing calls). See our pictures page for costs of each room. From the rent money a charity/subsidy fund is supported. There is a $10 rebate for paying on time and by etransfer. There is a slightly higher rental amount of $25 for the winter verses the summer to reflect the higher heating costs, and to reimburse people if the actual utility costs are less than projected.

Donation/subsidy fund – The house generates extra money that is donated to charity or used to provide financial support so people don’t need to work full time and can have more time to devote to service. Subsidies involve a commitment to doing extra service. Currently our focus is sponsoring the Veggie Challenge.

Other considerations – no smoking on the property especially near windows, no meat in the kitchen or bbqued outside. Respect for fish and oceans. If you eat eggs, please only buy ones that are as free-range and organic as possible. The same goes for cow’s milk and other dairy products. Please avoid using products with strong chemical smells or concentrated scents. Most of us are not into having the sounds of television or commercial radio in the home.

For more information check out (these items are a couple of years out of date):

House polices (also available as a pdf or text document by request)

De MOU July18.docx (Memorandum of Understanding – word document)

food-sharing-list3.pdf

These policies and agreements are based on nine years of community living.

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