Community Glue

May 17, 2018

What is it that binds people together?

 A Dunedin co-housing project


What I have observed from my time in communities is that the more time people spend together the more authentic they become.  It is tiring to always put on an act, most people live in fear of being judged and found wanting so they behave in a way which is not necessarily honest to their true nature. People try to please and don't speak their truth or get offended when someone else does express their upset. The more time you spend with someone the more comfortable you become and the more confident in the others forgiveness.

It is the time spent with other people in a community that provides the glue to hold it together and create the feeling of family or tribe - the sense of community.  It is therefore essential to create as many opportunities for connection as possible. This maybe by having a community house, library, school, playground, store or swimming pool. Anywhere that is a shared space where people can bump into each other and hang out. In town planning, to create the sense of community, in the area where people live, these may be called  linger nodes. They may be benches, playgrounds, skate parks etc where people can find others doing the same thing. At Mamaki Eco-village when the kids were growing up the most common place to meet people was at the trampoline.  The children bounced while the adults stood around the edge guarding and chatting. A common meeting place in many peoples lives is the supermarket. 

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