Musings about community

Submitted by Chris-Beth Cowie on December 28, 2012 - 10:58am
By Chris Beth


Where do you see community in your own life?


I see community in my church.  I also see it through school even though I am not in school anymore and we are not physically connected.  Using facebook and skype I am able to keep connected with my school friends.  The community has expanded as everyone is heading their own direction but we still have that common bond of school that brings us together and holds us together.

I also see community in my neighbourhood to a certain extent, though with people moving a lot, it is hard to keep a sense of community.

I notice community when I travel to other countries through the people I meet.  I keep in contact with these people even after I have returned, once again technology allows me too.  I really notice a global community and I feel it is building.  We are all connected by our common humanity and the fact we share the same planet.  We therefore have a responsibility to each other and to the earth.  We need to work towards a healthier global community


What does a healthier global community look like?


A healthy global community is a united body.  This does not mean everyone is the same, diversity is important but that we are able to value our differences and look past it to see the common threads of our shared humanity and shared planet.  Different people have different interests and this is good.

It is interesting, often times people assume that if you have the same coloured skin, it means you are the same in other ways.  The reality though is that we are all different and unique, even if we share the same skin colour, or the same name, or the same place of origin.

Chris-Beth Idea:

We need to dedicate one house to being a community house in our neighbourhoods:

                -this is a place where people can go to borrow and share resources (such as a community tool set)

                -this is also a great place for community dinners and events

                -this needs to be open for all

                -we need to share and support each other


What challenges do you see within your community?


Disconnect is the main problem, we are so busy that we are not able to stay connected.   We don’t know everyone in our neighbourhoods.  People seem to come in and out so quickly we can’t possibly get to know everyone.  We also seem to lack the initiative to form new bonds, therefore when people leave and new people come in we do not take the effort to bring them into the community.  Overtime, the community disappears.

When we have a shallow knowledge of each other, this can lead to stereotypes, assumptions and fear.  Because of this, we can have a lack of openness and trust in our communities.


What opportunities do you see within your communities?


I always have a burning desire to make my community better and I have lots of ideas to do this, I am just stalling on implementing them.  This makes me sad and if I am stalling others are as well.

There are always opportunities to grow community and I think a lot of it stems from having a knowledge and understanding of each other.  Public officials like the mayor and PM need to learn more about their community, they always seem so out of touch with the realities on the ground.

Chris-Beth’s Ideas to build community:

-Open house BBQ in backyard

-House is never too small to have a family over (invite a neighbour over for dinner)

-Go say hi to your neighbour on a regular occasion

-Having a community movie night


Let's do it!


Thanks so much for sharing your ideas on community!

Wow! What great ideas. We don't want you to be feeling down about "stalling." I think these ideas are great and realistic! How might Seeking Community support you in making one of your ideas on building community a reality?

A neighborhood BBQ... how can we make this happen?