Squad, tribe, community. Call it what you will, in the end, a rose has never smelled so sweet as knowing you have a community to rely on.
Whether you’re thinking of work, family or your physical neighbourhood, community has a significant impact on our lives. To me, community is what helps me get through the day to day, it’s the people who encourage me and remind me of the bigger picture, it’s the knowledge that I’m not alone.
Over the past month I’ve been gathering information from Canadians about what community means to them. The below paints a clear picture of the importance and critical nature of community, in their words.
“My village is the online community. When I think of community my mind doesn’t go to a particular place its more of a lifestyle lived out through actions not words. For me food bridges all gaps between people. It has unique abilities to bring us together because there is something about sitting around a table that invites connection and intimacy. And I believe that’s true no matter where you go.”
“I have a deep desire for connectedness in community. There is a unique connection that happens through music and music-making. I believe that vulnerability and a willingness to expose parts of our inner self opens the door to intimacy and connectedness.”
“When you have community at work, it doesn’t feel like work. When nurses are able to come together and support each other it’s a beautiful thing. As a nurse, you are dealing with all sorts of emotions from day to day. Your dealing with anger, sadness, happiness all aspects. It’s very important to have a strong community to support you through that.”
“I became a teacher because I wanted to be a part of a community. I wanted to be one of the cogs that helped to raise children. I was raised in a strong community, where I had people who cared for me. I think that definitely helped me succeed as a child, and has helped me succeed in my life now.”
In addition to talking to Canadians I’ve also been looking at what community looks like to those around the world. The It takes a village
series, shows this connection in more detail. In the end, what I’ve learned is, that without community our potential for success is limited. In essence, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.