The Co-Liv Network
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The Co-Liv Network

Meet Cate Maiolini, Co-Liv’s Head of Ambassadors

“Coliving will be big, very big in the future. In fact, coliving is the future!”

As part of our members series, we are portraying the humans behind the association. Today, we have the honor to introduce you to Cate Maiolini, who joined Co-Liv both as UK Ambassador and more recently as Head of Co-liv Ambassadors part of the executive team.

Discover her vision for the Coliving scene and her mission within the wider coliving ecosystem.

Cate Maiolini

What is your relationship to coliving and how are you active in the scene?

I am the House Mayor of StartupHome London which is a social enterprise coliving in Islington, London. I am also the UK ambassador for Co-Liv.

I am very, very passionate about coliving. I strongly believe that bringing people together and gathering passionate people in the same place is the formula of innovation. I also believe that creating a newer and modern type of community is the future and this is what we really need.

There is a lot of loneliness in the world. We often feel like we are on our own and we feel lost. Based on my experience in living with communities of similar-minded people, who have the same interests and backgrounds, this set-up can greatly help these individuals strive and battle loneliness and find their way to overcome such feelings.

My mission is to create a community where loneliness and unbelongingness doesn’t exist. I want them to feel that they matter. They are in control. We bring people together by allowing them to contribute to the community and the community will do the same for them. This can help them to feel empowered and help them to feel that they have a family they can support and lean on.

In the past couple of years, StartupHome has been working on bringing entrepreneurs, remote workers, and innovators together from any race, nationally, and background. In doing so we want to create a more vibrant, open, and accountable society.

How did you discover coliving and what experiences did you have with it?

Here’s a little bit of my background. I come from a very small village in Italy, I remember that we were a very tightly-knit community. We celebrated together and we solved problems together. Each of us really contributed and shared our knowledge, skills, and resources to make sure that everyone is living a good life and we make sure that everyone is supported. I think this is where my passion for coliving sprouted without me even knowing it yet.

My love for coliving increased when I was traveling back in the days, during my work in fashion. There were a lot of young people of different races, religions, and nationalities who were traveling to join fashion weeks in big cities like New York, Milan, and Paris.

We started to live together during those weeks and to collaborate and exchange ideas. Then we decided to rent a bigger place all the time so that it could spend more time together as creatives. We felt like we would achieve a lot more when we do things together.

This is where everything switched for me. This combination of having enough privacy for you to be able to have your own time whilst deepening your relationships with the people around you. This makes you feel more empowered because you are able to give more to the community and you’ll feel that your perspectives matter and that you are important.

As mentioned I am running Startuphome in London, which is the first social enterprise in Europe on the coliving scene. We truly care about our members and their wellbeing so much so that we have launched our project called [Orange] edition. This project is very special to me. The profits of the sales of the [Orange] edition products will go directly to the community, providing scholarships, education, and accommodation to young founders and innovators.

It’s a project that was on the pipeline for a while but the whole COVID situation speeded it up. Our aim is also to help underprivileged young men and women who are not able to start their business or those who can’t use their full potential for economic reasons. This will give them an opportunity to grow and flourish to who they want to be and therefore become an asset to the local community as well as the international

Why did you join Co-Liv as Ambassador for the United Kingdom and what are your objectives for your region?

I have been such a fan of Co-Liv since I first came across them so, first of all, I feel honored to be the UK Ambassador. I am of Italian origin but the UK has been my home for the past 18 years and I am looking forward to being one of the pioneers in the coliving sector for my region.

If we think about what coworking was back in the day, let’s say about ten years ago, people didn’t understand the potential of it, nor did they understand what it is and how it works. I think only a very few people understood what was happening and could predict it back in the days.
Now is coliving time and I believe we are visionaries.

Coliving will be big, very big in the future. In fact, coliving is the future!. It is where we are headed because it is going to solve a lot of problems in our current society. These may vary from the number of houses/accommodation available to affordability and location. But it will also include loneliness and it will simplify finding a place to live where you can also contribute to and have a purpose. When you are part of a community, you don’t only take from the community but you also give back. The Guardian reported a few days ago how more than 200 elderly people in London may have passed away during this pandemic, alone at home. This would have not happened if they were in a coliving with other members. Coliving is multigenerational is not just for the single young professionals, is open to anyone and it is for anyone and this is the message I want to bring to my region also.

We are changing and shaping the future society therefore I want to bring to Government bodies, local authorities, Housing sector regulators more awareness around coliving and I want to work together toward a common goal.

I am an active member of the London Coworking assembly as I believe that Coworking and Coliving will end up blending into one so I am actively connecting the two already.

Last, but not least, I want to play an important role in raising the standard of living in shared accommodations. There have been big problems in the past with investors and management companies that had no interest in the standard of living of their customers nor on their customer experience journey let alone in creating communities. This has to change, starting from yesterday and this is my mission for the UK! ( and the rest of the world).

What do you think is Co-Liv’s potential and what do you want to bring to the coliving scene?

I believe Co-Liv will have a strong impact on the global coliving industry and overall on the coliving sector. It will actively work in promoting coliving and getting recognized globally. We will help future professionals by hosting interactive programs and activities, help them connect with other members within the coliving space

I would like to help Co-Liv to bring its mission everywhere in the world. Right now, Co-liv is already live in 16 countries and 4 continents. My mission is to make sure that by the end of the year we would cover all the continents and many more countries. There already are potential ambassadors that we are going to chat with that may be to joining us soon so watch this space. I also want to push all of us ambassadors to be even more active, to grow the coliving scene in our country, to connect everybody who is part of the coliving scene, and then take this into a much higher and wider scale.

Here is the thing, when the World Wide Web started, I was extremely young but I immediately understood its potential. The fact that the world itself became much smaller because we were able to be connected with anybody, anywhere so quickly and in no time and in a cost-effective manner. It was never done before. Right now, we have the ability to do it and I believe we must be the way to connect all coliving operators and enthusiasts and everybody who is embracing this coliving revolution in one way or another.

I guess that’s my main mission with Co-Liv and coliving, I want everybody to know about us by connecting to them and connecting them.

Inspired by my colleague William, the Portugal ambassador, I also want to start to collaborate with Global governments and Authorities to start creating proper guidelines and regulations for a harmonious coliving sector.

And what should people get in touch with you for?

With my extended knowledge in community building and operational side of a coliving space

I am always happy to have a chat with operators who may face hurdles, to property investors that want to find out more about the coliving world, HMO/multilet owners/investors that want to transaction into a more community-driven coliving set up and future proof their business or to someone new on the topic that wants to tap into the coliving revolution.

I am co-writing and co-recording a course with two colleagues at the moment. It is a pretty comprehensive guide on how to find a coliving space, how to set it up, how to make it efficient, how to run it, and all the behind the scenes that we have been doing for many years. This will be live soon and updates will be posted on my social media.

Also happy to connect to property developers that are looking into the coliving scene and may not know much about it. Happy to educate them and consult on future projects.

Because I am a member of Co-liv I also have access to an international pool of contacts from different countries and ecosystems, from manufacturers to proptech companies, architect and designers and as my mission is to be able to connect everybody globally I am always up for linking people together creating new synergies and partnerships.

You can reach me here — https://www.linkedin.com/in/caterinamaiolini/

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Discover the stories, insights and content from Co-Liv and its global network of coliving professionals.

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