The Kindness Snowball

Submitted by Nora Smith on March 20, 2017 - 3:14am

Barb grew up in a very small town.  To now look outside her urban window and not have solid connections is different, feels disconnected.  "Being familiar with my neighbors gives me a feeling of security and connectedness" remarks Barb. "Knowing your neighbours does however require an openness to build new relationships."

“Did you know your overhead garage door is wide open?” said the voice on the other end of the line.  With her family asleep in the house, Barb was thankful for her neighbours late night call.  She felt like they were in it together.  Seven years of building relationships through Green Deer (spring cleanup program) and block parties hit home. 

“If we would apply those little small acts, they would snowball” says Barb. “It comes down to kindness.  Make space and time and be intentional.  It doesn’t have to be big.”

A few words of wisdom from Barb’s experience in building neighborliness: 

  • People by nature want to do this  
  • It can be difficult but not to get discouraged when people are not on same path as you 
  • Gives a real sense of satisfaction, makes your day better when you stop and offer a hand 

For Barb, having a reason to begin those relationships was important.  Looking for an established program to give an opening?  Check out the Great Neighbours initiative

Comment on or share this tidbit.  CreativeExchange Consulting is doing a series of stories on Great Neighbours & would love to hear from you!  Give them a shout at