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How to build great communities

It seems that, the powers that be, are always after a ‘silver bullet’ or grand gesture that will build a community. There is no such thing. In times of crisis or shared tragedy, communities do band together to help each other or share their grief but communities are also built on thousands of daily ‘small gestures’, not grand gestures.

After many years of working in a range of communities it has become obvious that something happens in the GOOD communities that is lacking in the SAD communities. It is the small things that count; the quick chat about the weather at the petrol bowser, the conversation over the fence about the kids’ sporting triumphs, the shared excitement at the shop counter about an upcoming community event. All of these small interactions build a community. Just as importantly is that typically Australian ‘quick nod of the head’ as you busily pass a mate in the street or the casual ‘raising of a finger from the steering wheel’ as you drive down a country road.

The small gestures repeated thousands of times each day are the building blocks of a strong resilient community. The best thing is …. such activities are in our hands, everyday people who want their kids to inherit a great place to live.

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