There are plenty of things you can do this summer to get to know your neighbours and the good news is, it doesn’t have to be big! Stuck for ideas? We’ve put together a few lovely things you can do this summer to strengthen your community little by little. We’d love to hear about your #smallsteps so feel free to @ us on Twitter and Instagram and don’t forget to use the hashtag!
1. Step outside and spend a little more time outside your front door
This is a simple way to connect with neighbours passing by and all you need to do is step outside – easy peasy.
2. A smile, wave or hello can go a long way
Isolation is an issue across all ages, particularly the elderly and those living alone. You could be the only person they chat to that day so smile, wave and say hi. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference it can make and we’ve heard that smiling is contagious…
3. Draw a hopscotch on the pavement with chalk
Awaken your inner child and create your own hopscotch. You’ll be surprised by how many people will have a go and it will for sure have all the kids on your street playing together.
4. Make an offer
After making a new friend in your community, why not offer to look after your neighbour’s plants and/or pets while they are away? It’s amazing to feel like you’re supported by people in your community. Keep in mind those who are less able or are going through a tough time – any small gesture would be appreciated.
5. Invite your neighbour over for a cuppa
Asking your neighbour over for a cuppa and a chat can go a long way. If it goes well you could also organise a ‘cuppa meet up’ and make it a regular thing.
6. Take out/in your neighbour’s rubbish bin
Whether your neighbour is running late, has a lot going on, or going on holiday, a small favour like taking out their bin will make all the difference.
7. Start a litter clean-up of your street or local area
Put together a dream team who take pride in their community and clean up your streets. Make this a regular event and it will hopefully encourage everyone to look after the local area more.
8. Get a group together
You could start a group with like-minded folk to bring your community together. This could be a book club, a community garden or get those steps in by suggesting a neighbourhood walking group. If you’re not feeling a book club, you could take a book you love, and hide it in your local area – you’ll get to share your favourite read and give your book new life, whilst someone else gets to share your experience. Starting something local makes it easier for people to join too.
9. Fundraise to improve your community
Is there a park that needs revamping? Or perhaps you’d like to create a safe, creative space for your neighbourhood? This is all possible and you can do so by fundraising within your community. Community improvements will have a direct impact on you and your neighbours – win, win!
10. Go green!
If you’re a city dweller you might want to transform your local area by getting involved in urban greening - adding plants, trees and green spaces to an urban environment to make it a better place to live and work. Greening helps people connect with nature, cleans our air and makes area that little bit prettier! Why not get started by planting a flower in your street and encouraging others to join too?