Our Values

Early in our process we met and brainstormed our values. This was a great exercise as we each had the opportunity to suggest values statements that we personally brought to the group. After posting those on a wall we then honed in on the things that we shared in common. It was so gratifying to see that our group values very fully reflected our individual priorities and passions. After that we took a few minutes to similarly reflect on issues and priorities that would make it either possible or impossible for each of us to commit to the community. These are listed as our "non-negotiables". Again, there was generally tremendous consensus around these items as well.

These decisions are made thoughtfully and after everyone is heard. Consensus decision making takes more time than voting but allows for much more comfort with the agreements that we make with each other.

Our Values:

Spiritual without religious

Honesty, truthfulness, caring, responsible

Arts

Sharing (resources, space)

Peace and Social Justice

Environmentally sensitive, not automobile-centric

Diversity, multi-generational, families

Gardening

Animals/pets welcomed

Learning


Non-negotiable:

(to be read as “must be…”)

Pets allowed

No proselytizing - Secular

Multi-generational

Organic gardening

Everyone contributes

No streets in the property

Solar/efficient/sustainable

Private space for each home

Able to travel away for extended periods

No more than 12-16 units

No smoking tobacco

In January, 2019 we revisited the topic of values. Membership of the group had changed somewhat, but there is significant overlap in values.

The Evans Oaks Cottages foundational values for life together include:

  • Peace
  • Love
  • Respect
  • Diversity
  • Gratitude
  • Social Justice
  • Compassion
  • Welcome
  • Hospitality
  • Kindness
  • Neighborliness

To enhance our life together, we will find ways to bring the following into our homes, common space, and gatherings:

  • Creativity
  • Beauty
  • Art
  • Learning
  • Playful
  • Fun
  • Tranquility
  • Balance

Because we want to treat our environment well, we will find ways to embody and practice:

  • Simplicity
  • Sustainability
  • Sharing
  • Teamwork
  • Generosity
  • Unity
  • Effectiveness
  • Collaboration

In order to promote healthy relationships, satisfaction within the community, and good communication, each member of the Evans Oaks Cottages will:

  • Communicate directly with other members
  • Practice authenticity
  • Be accountable to each other
  • Strive for consistency
  • Assume best intentions
  • Offer forgiveness and grace
  • Have integrity
  • Accept difference
  • Provide security
  • Develop awareness of self and others
  • Be sensitive to the needs of others

In our community, we agree that the following items or practices are not part of our intimate life together. It doesn’t mean we don’t honor the rights and desires of our neighbors who might have these things or use these items, but we agree not to have them in Evans Oaks Cottages.

  • We will not have guns stored on property
  • We will not use noisy equipment, including gas-powered leaf blowers
  • We will not leave vehicles idling
  • We will not allow invasive plants to grow on our property
  • We will not allow tobacco smoking on the property
  • We will limit light pollution and only use downward directional exterior lights
  • We will not own livestock or outdoor pets that disrupt other members’ private space or common areas

The Evans Oaks Cottage residents embrace a vibrant life together that includes:

  • Gardening and cultivating our natural environment
  • Sharing life with our pets
  • Striving to use hand-powered gardening tools over gas-powered tools when possible
  • Fostering healthy families and developing new family-like relationships
  • Making space for children and honoring the gear/toys and energy they bring to community
  • Embracing a multigenerational perspective and experience of life together
  • Allowing members to travel regularly without guilt
  • Value for each member’s privacy

Because we want to grow deep, healthy, committed relationships within our community, all members in Evans Oaks Cottages will:

  • Respect quiet times and those who request a quiet space
  • Maintain a clutter-free exterior and common space
  • Be considerate of lower income households
  • Offer support and find ways to be helpful to other members
  • Share skills and learn from/with each other
  • Celebrate differences and create space for individuality
  • Honor the spiritual practices of others but not proselytize each other
  • Commit to recycling, reusing, and reducing to the greatest extent possible
  • Be present at community gatherings often to maintain connection and strengthen relationships
  • Continually find balance between community expectations and privacy/independence
  • Make efforts to build relationships with neighbors and invite them to gatherings