Agreements and Procedures


Here you will find copies of our procedures and policies. All prospective members are advised to get very familiar with these before attending meetings. The documents are released under a Creative Commons license, should you wish to use, adapt, etc for your own purposes.


Decision Making Process

This document puts all of the Project's decision making processes into one place. Its basically our elaboration of the commonly used cohousing consensus method. It is certainly not the only way, but its a great place to start, while members are getting up to speed, learning to trust the group process, and while the project is relatively small.

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Meeting Procedures

Our full circle meetings are the projects constituional decision making body, something like a parliament. We have leaned heavily on Earthsong for this document, and in turn was adapted from Dale Hunters book. This model gives all members a voice, brings a bit of heart into the dialogue, and has an established history of working for other groups.

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Conflict Management Procedures

Disputes and conflicts are inevitable, so its important to agree on how they are to handled, before hand. This document is our own work, it touchs on communication in general, as well as covering conflicts between members and between a member and the project. Mediation is a primary theme.

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Spending Policy

This is temporary and spells out how the project money can be spent or committed. Adapted more or less wholly from Earthsong as well. We are working on a more detailed fincances management policy.

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Membership Process

This explains how new members navigate the process of going from stranger to member. There are three stages in the process, and its been our most challenging policy design task. The 'cohousing model' given by McCammant and Durret had to be substantially modified to prioritise relationship building.

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Membership Agreement

This is signed by members at the time of becoming an Associate member, and affirms our commitment and shared purpose together. It basically says that i agree with the vision and understand that the work may require me to examine my baggage a little. Once members achieve associate status they are elligible to reside in the coop. So, our changes amount to slowing the process down substantially.

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You can also find a bundled version of all these documents

in zip format here.

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Whangarei, NZ
T- 021 0243 9081

© The Big House Project 2022

Photos: Pixabay, and The Zegg Ecovillage, used with permission. Line drawings: Shutterstock used with permission. Your email address will be used with care for the sole purpose of The Big House outreach.