Poverty of Community
I’ve been to some of the most poverty-stricken places on earth, including shanty towns, villages made up of mud huts, dumps where mothers and fathers scavenge alongside their children, and urban slums. What often strikes me the most isn’t what they don’t have, but what they do have: a strong sense of community, much stronger than our sense of community in Muncie, Indiana. Their communities live in abject poverty. We have a poverty of community.
What are you doing to build community?
I found the exact same thing while living in various poverty-stricken places in the world! At home I wanted to create community too, so I talked to a few of my neighbours and organized a corn roast on my front lawn. People who have lived on the street for over 20 years met for the first time!
Since then we have had many regular get-togethers, including several of us spending Christmas mornings together with potluck brunches. I also have a large garden so it has become a community garden, with other neighbours planting there too – after I taught them how 🙂
Merna, That is SO cool. I’ve been thinking about ways to reach out to my immediate neighbors, but I’m somewhat hesitant. It’s not always easy to reach outside of your bubble. Will they ask to borrow my lawn mower every day? Will they think we’re BFFs and stop me every time I pass their house? Maybe this is why it’s harder to build community the closer to home the community is.