Community is not a commodity. It is the foundation that even allows commodities to be used and traded. It allows for a place for trust to grow. There are ways to foster a community and still get what we need. Community is not about just meeting your needs but everyone’s needs. It is an understanding that no matter how independent we are we will rely on others in our community at some point. That is why it is more than a commodity. It is something that everyone needs a connection with and that we all have to work to build, shape, and protect.
We believe we all must engage in more community building. The first step is recognizing that you can do something about the community around you. The second step is just getting out and being an active participant. It isn’t about giving every free moment, you don’t have to give up watching Sunday night football, picnics, gardening, Netflix binges, or other activities that you enjoy. You set a goal of community involvement and then you commit to it. The third step is to think in two parts whenever you are presented with a choice, the first part being “is this good for the community?” and the second part being “is this good for me?”. Combining these steps can lead to self-empowerment and a vibrant community.
Some examples of community involvement that have a good impact on you and the community are working in a community garden, participating in local elections, public art projects, park clean-ups, and volunteering with groups that interest you. These are all things that better the community around you and can lead to bettering you. Taking time to be a part of something in the community can provide real connections that we all need. This makes it more likely that you will be able to take action when something harmful to the community takes place.
When community and self-interest are balanced, there can be harmony, empowerment, and enrichment for all involved. We really encourage you to go explore and find some way to be involved in the community around you, or to create your own community!