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About Us

GrassRoutes Cohousing began in February 2016 with a large public meeting of people interested in alternative forms of housing.  Our group evolved over time.  From the beginning we used sociocracy as both a governing and decision making structure.  Together we created a strong social community, incorporated as a Cooperative Corporation, hired professionals to help through the cohousing development process.  When looking for a location, we came across another cohousing group in Guelph with a shared vision. 

 

Speedvale Cohousing, in Guelph, started in 2012 with a group called the Sustainable Intentional Living Community (SILC). They assembled land for the development.  Proposed preliminary designs were developed by a local architect and a rezoning application was submitted to the city and approved February 14, 2023.

On March 4, 2023 GrassRoutes and Speedvale Cohousing met for a day-long workshop to discuss joining together to continue with the creating social agreements, site plan approvals, designing and constructing the buildings that will be the home of the GrassRoutes Cohousing community. 

Vision

We envision courageous, innovative communities in which people actively care for each other and the environment.

Mission

We are building a sustainable, intergenerational neighbourhood that is socially and economically inclusive, we positively engage with each other and the wider community.

Values

Sustainable

Inclusive

Budget Conscious

Participatory/Engaging

Innovative/Dynamic

Our Members

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Al Parrish

I am a husband, dad, brother, grandpa, uncle, cuz, musician & broadcaster. Living in Ecovillage@Ithaca, I became a big believer in the value of community.

Why am I part of this community? I believe that we really want to know our neighbours, for a closer, more intentional connection and commitment. That's what we're creating. I look forward to the process and the goal.

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Anne Wright-Gedcke

I was inspired to explore co-housing by my niece, a resident of Vancouver Cohousing, as one way to live into values of community and sustainability. I work for a local supportive housing agency, and enjoy canoeing, curling, playing squash and singing with the Inshallah choir.   I also enjoy cooking Sunday dinner for my young adult children (Ruth and Richard) and other family members, and look forward to cooking in the co-housing common kitchen one day!

Coming Soon

Connie

Connie seeks a balanced life with varied activities. She abandoned the rat race years ago and is content to live simply, frugally and gratefully, always considering her impact on our beautiful blue-green planet which we share.

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Debbie Samson

Being part of this cohousing group is energizing and exciting. Living with others who value sustainability, social and racial justice, and love to have fun is a dream come true!  I enjoy activities such as canoe trips, cycling, cross-country skiing, campfires, knitting, meditating, hiking, and growing vegetables. I am excited our group is committed to uncovering and breaking down barriers that have made cohousing traditionally more difficult for some than others.  I believe the world will be better when the richness of everyone’s unique life experiences is valued and shared. 

Coming Soon

Don

Since the early 2000’s my partner - Connie - and I have organically grown 90% of our yearly food in Puslinch Township. We are attempting to naturalize a few acres of this property which contains 4+ acres of Ontario Significant Wetlands. 

 

I enjoy the outdoors in all seasons with my partner.  I feel I am innovative and appreciate new ideas from any age person as I like to learn.

Some things I try to support: collaboration, cooperation, environment, innovation. 

I believe life learning is as important as formal learning.  I look forward to this adventure with GrassRoutes Cohousing.

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Judy Cantwell

With various experiences of community behind me, such as co-op housing and intentional faith –based communities, I am delighted that I discovered this group at a perfect time:  I have four adult ‘kids’ following their own adventures across this country. I am a social worker, focusing on community work in neighbourhoods, across cultures and identities. I am idealistic and optimistic:  I persistently choose to dream of a society where (child) poverty would be a shadow of a memory. I am inspired by the tireless work of advocates for social justice. I hope I can live simply do a little good,   with other change makers I meet along the journey. Alone,  I fear I can’t confront the ‘isms”  of our struggling world, but in community I feel empowered

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Karen Reid

I am excited to live in cohousing in Guelph. I have lived in many different types of community settings surrounded by nature. I am particularly interested in this site as when I am in the back of the property, I feel like I am at a cottage, and there is even space for large vegetable gardens.  I look forward to being part of creating and living in a diverse community that reflects my ideals and beliefs. I hope to share my passions with others, such as hiking, canoeing, swimming, fitness, pickleball, scrabble, and hockey.  

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Liz Lynn

I work at University of Waterloo.  My volunteer activities include Habitat for Humanity, Food Bank of Waterloo Region, and Girl Guides of Canada.

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Mark Gedcke

I am enthusiastic about singing, playing the guitar, swimming, curling with Anne, walking in the woods, being a counsellor at Shalom Counselling Services Inc.  I am grateful to be part of GrassRotues Cohousing because of friendships, sociocracy, the goal of living lighter and with compassion in community.

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Mike Fortin

Mike is an environmental economist who has worked on environmental and social projects in Canada and abroad for over 30 years. 

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Vicki Beard

Vicki, now retired, ran her own pet grooming business in Guelph for 25 years, served as Councillor for the City of Guelph, is a Master Gardener and artist and helped establish two non-profits in the City.

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Wendy Pearle

I am a life-long learner, using what life offers to learn and grow. I am a mother, partner, friend, midwife and dog owner. I love music (especially live), I play the piano, banjo and guitar in my living room - maybe 1 day in public. I love to laugh and enjoy good conversation. I try new things like music sewing, gardening, cooking, hiking, outdoor activities and building a skoolie

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