Last updated: March 25, 2020
Housing cooperatives and our members are in a unique position during the COVID-19 outbreak to utilize the values and skillsets we've prioritized as a movement: concern for community, responsibility, mutual aid, solidarity, and organization.
NASCO is working to continue our mission to provide resources and encouragement to housing cooperatives across North America during this global crisis. We are shifting our programming to meet the situation, providing space for cooperatives to build and share action plans, and connecting co-ops to resources as needed.
We are closely monitoring the increasing spread of COVID-19 and taking proactive steps to support our members and the communities that they are embedded within. We are continuously evaluating the situation and adjusting as needed.
See below for:
- NASCO Programming Updates
NASCO Member Visits - We have suspended all NASCO member visits that require travel until further notice and are increasing our offering of remote trainings and consultations to member co-ops.
NASCO Board Meeting - Our upcoming Board Meeting will be completely remote.
Staff & Managers Conference - Our Staff & Managers Conference this May will be held remotely. We are working on creating an agenda that allows co-op staff and managers to register per session or per day. It's our hope that this new format will allow for co-ops to send multiple staffers to workshops based on their interests and areas of expertise. We are hoping to open registration on April 1, 2020. Please subscribe to our newsletter and join our member Slack channel for updates.
Student Co-op Leadership Convening - The Student Co-op Leadership Convening previously scheduled to take place in Ontario this June will also be held remotely. Please subscribe to our newsletter and join our member Slack channel for updates.
Cooperative Internship Network - Because we are unsure about travel limitations this summer, we are coordinating with our internship hosts to see how many remote positions we may be able to offer this summer. Please subscribe to our newsletter and join our member Slack channel for updates.
- Join our slack channel #covid-19-response to share/collaborate with other co-ops. Some resources shared so far include:
- Housing Cooperative / Group Living Suggested COVID-19 Protocol
- Laurel House Emergency Preparedness Plan
- Boulder Housing Coalition Mandatory Guidelines
- Public Health Agreements and House Guidelines from Cloyne Court Co-op members at the Berkeley Student Cooperative
- Wood St. Co-op CVOID-19 Action Plan
- Bread & Roses Co-operative Homes COVID-19 Strategy
- Collective Living & COVID-19
- Communal Living & COVID-19
- CHF Canada's Housing Co-ops and COVID-19 Resource Page
- NASCO has a short survey where members can share their current economic impact from COVID-19. We are hearing that our member co-ops are dealing with as many as half of their members out of work or leaving due to shutdowns of workplaces and campuses across the US and Canada. As events are happening quickly, we want to get a birds-eye view of how this is and will be affecting our members economically. We are looking for information to coordinate a broader response to help co-ops work through the economic impacts that seem likely.
- The Cooperative Fund of New England (CFNE) has posted an excellent page on Cooperative Resilience Resources.
- The SBA is offering Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) in declared "disaster areas." These have been declared everywhere in the US. Additionally, the SBA has approved CARES act, which allows for covering payroll costs as well. For example, if your co-op loses rent because of the closure of a nearby university (members losing their income, scholarships, international students unable to return, students moving home), that might qualify the co-op for a loan.
- More info here: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/Information/EIDLLoans
- USFWC created a useful guide on how to apply for EIDL funding. Click here to access the guide.
- The ICA group also created a helpful guide on all parts of the SBA loans (EIDL, and CARES). Click here to access the guide.
- Shared Capital Cooperative is offering emergency loans to cooperatives. Click here for the application.
- The Cooperative Fund of New England has a $1M Emergency Cooperative Enterprise Relief Loan Fund for cooperatives in New England and parts of New York State. Click here for more information.
If your co-op needs assistance applying for any of these funding sources, Click here to request COVID-19 loan application assistance for your co-op from NASCO.
- COVID-19 Mutual Aid and Advocacy Resources
- Collective Care is Our Best Weapon Against COVID-19
- Transformative Spaces' Demands from Grassroots Organizers Concerning COVID-19
- Resources for online meetings, classes, and events from Facilitators for Pandemic Response Group
- Coronavirus: Wisdom from a Social Justice Lens (Podcast)
- Adrienne Maree Brown's Additional Resources for Facing Coronavirus/Covid19
We are encouraging our network to practice radical solidarity through this time by sharing information, building resources, and bridging gaps for folks with differing vulnerabilities.
Remember that everyone processes stress and emotions differently. Be gentle with each other and extend grace, empathy, and patience. Check in often.
Take time to talk through and share concerns as a community. Revisit your community agreements. Use this information and other reliable sources to create a community action plan.
Join the NASCO Slack to connect with other co-ops about action plans and community care resources.
Please reach out to NASCO staff at email@example.com if you need support.