I’m Alexandra Bullen Coutts, founder of Haven. For years, and with the tireless support of a circle of friends, I dreamed of building a community of creative and socially-minded professionals on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. As a freelance journalist, author, and full-time mom, I yearned for a space to work, to be inspired and to grow — a space that wasn’t my couch, kitchen table, or bed.
I knew I wasn’t alone. According to data collected by the Martha's Vineyard Donors Collaborative, 28% of Islanders are self-employed, and Dukes County has the highest percentage of people who work at home in the state of Massachusetts.
Working at home can be a luxury. It can also be full of distractions (dirty dishes, I’m looking at you…) not to mention lonely and isolating.
The more I heard from other work-at-home types, the more I realized that we all desperately needed a place to be grown ups, together. A place to get down to business, to grow our businesses and to follow our creative and professional pursuits.
With fingers and toes crossed, we gathered a pilot group of ten professionals— some self-employed and growing Island businesses, others who work virtually and remotely while maintaining an active connection to the local economy— and spent a glorious six months sharing a small workspace; a “room of our own” behind a lovely flower shop in Vineyard Haven.
Since then, we’ve grown and found a new and bigger home just up the road. Now, instead of working in our pajamas, we work in a peaceful and inspiring setting, surrounded by interesting grown-ups all day long.
But the dream doesn’t end here. Building community is about more than just work, and we are excited to host a series of after-hours events: from casual knit nights and happy hours to professional development workshops, we love being a place where people can gather to explore, create and evolve, personally and professionally.
Let’s work together.