Nearly the whole summer had gone by and the neighborhood courtyard was still empty of activity. Olivia’s neighbors weren’t coming out into the courtyard. In fact, they hadn’t come out this month, last month or the months before. They stayed inside, mingling with their own families. No time for strangers.
No time to make friends. “Where is the sense of community gone”, she asked herself, while sitting on the balcony overlooking the big square courtyard. Blame it on the economy. Perhaps! Blame it on the Mobil revolution. Maybe! Blame it on crime. Not quite, at least, not in this neighborhood.
Creating a great community where neighbors are an extended family- helping, giving, and encouraging one another in multiple ways is a challenge. But it can be done. Olivia’s Neighborhood must redevelop a sense of community in order to create a great neighborhood where a sense of brotherhood, sisterhood, fun, peace and safety exist.
Many great communities across the United States have already lost or are in the process of losing their community consciousness. This is alarming. Without a sense of community, a neighborhood becomes infected with a habit of suspicion and mistrust. As a result, this attitude of disconnection runs rampant.
When a community is disconnected, alienation is born. Human communication is brief or non-existence. Due to mistrust, a door opens for a multitude of dark forces such as drugs and crime.
Causes for Lack of Community
Many causes exist for the lack of community, but one of the main reasons could be the explosion of technological devices, especially Mobil devices, including cell phones, smartphones, iPhone, iPod and laptops. These devices occupy so much attention that expressing goodwill toward others is neglected on a humongous scale.
Studies have indicated that a majority of automobile accidents happens due to the use of cell phones and other Mobil devices while driving. But historically, the preoccupation with Mobil devices begins in the early eighties with the Walkman and boom boxes blaring down the street.
With the invention of more sophisticated Mobil technology capturing the minds and hearts of most Americans, self-preoccupation is more prevalent in the 21st century. Now neighbors neglect neighbors. As a result, the community suffers.
A Strong Desire for togetherness
Individuals interested in establishing good community must have a strong desire to make something good happen or a passion for bringing people together. Many people step back and wait for others to make something interesting happen.
All it takes is a little courage and sensitivity to the needs of others. However, in order to become a cause instead of an effect, the requirements of desire and passion are a necessity. All other activities are built upon this passion: to transform a community into a family.
Initiate Community Gatherings
Community gathering opens up opportunities for neighbors to get acquainted with one another and form lasting friendships. Usually, all it takes is an individual willing to make his or herself known to their neighbors.
Walk around and greet others, introduce yourself and shake hands. Let them know how you feel about establishing a connective community where neighbors can help one another feel appreciated and important.
You will be surprised at how many people who would want to become a part of this idea but never had the courage to initiate it.
Olivia arose from her chair and momentarily stood still, her eyes to surveying the courtyard.
Occasionally, people came out to empty the trash while others peeped out of the window before going immediately back into seclusion. However, Olivia smiled. A sense of hope came over her. Not in her neighborhood. If a change was going to come, it was going to come through her. She was willing to initiate it, to develop it, to create it: a community consciousness.