~COCOON~ Sprout Wings! via Crowdrise
January 10, 2011
The "on the verge" population in our fair country is bursting at the seams while services to help them are being cut like crazy for the sake of the few. ~We, the people~ and I say that with no political meaning whatsoever, are left to deal with it.
One very small drop in the bucket is Cocooning. A model built to support, enrich, teach life skills, provide housing, aid in the process of keeping a job, keeping a house, keep going to school or to start, keeping one's wits about one's self. Pick one or all.
It is a group as small as a household or as large as a small village. It consists of Mentors ( people past 50who have some life skills to teach that they most likely learned from their grandparents) with the time and patience and need of supplemental income to survive ~ matched with Mentees or Youngers as I like to call them because they are just younger than us, adults with or without children, emancipated teens, single moms and dads who wish they could share a little companionship with others without investing in another miserable personal relationship, and other people that may be barely hanging on in many ways. We address all life domains in a Cocoon
. There are people who see wisdom in becoming a co-created temporary family. there are people who do not want to go on Welfare and see it as a humiliation and a road to continuing poverty with no realistic exit strategy.
Cocooning offers what they seek. It is built around each member's personal wraparound plan. We used to call this family just a few generations ago. Extended family lived together, especially during hard times. There is nothing really new here except for the use of today's technology which happens to jive nicely in a number of ways. A wraparound plan 50 years ago would simply have been your whole family reaching out to help. Today,you build the plan, we help you stick to it. All of us. You stay until you don't need us any more, usually about a year. A couple of things that keep people within the grips of poverty are the lack of mobility and safe shelter. If your credit has been ruined, it's tough to find a place to call home. If you can't find a job locally, you may need to travel to where there is one. It takes more than courage, it takes transportation and a place to live. When you leave a Cocoon, you leave with a "home" of your choice, a green reconditioned RV, trailer, or custom designed and built cottage on wheels (one for each adult) or a nest egg in leiu of that to take you to where you need to be. You learn what you think you need to learn and a great deal more because part of this is to absorb for the future some of the skills of our elders that are being lost through the generations. Yes, it is important these days to know how to budget your money, how to grow an awesome garden and why, how to sew, how to refurbish items that you were brought up thinking should be tossed in the garbage when they break, and much much more. It's about living lightly, living with respect for yourself and others, living larger than you think you can. And then giving it back or forward or to the guy next to you on the bus.
Here's where I should apologize for telling you it's new. Of course it isn't. It's thousands of years old. It's as old as the socialization of man and the ability to live succesfully in groups for the benefit of each other's well being. It's just that we dress a little nicer now but that's no reason to feel superior is it?