Cheryll's Writing Journal

Musings, rants and ravings, plus gems of insight nobody wants to hear now that I've finally got them. Also neat stuff I found on the 'Net when I should have been updating this blog....

Thursday, April 26, 2007

How to Build Community...

Today a friend (thanks, Margie!) showed me a copy of a poster, which had obviously been copied numerous times -- and as soon as I read it, I wanted a copy, too!

When I went on line to see if I could find the source -- because anyone who could put something this neat together deserves the credit -- but struck out. This appears to have been such a popular notion, and copied so much by just about everyone who saw it, that the source is too obscure for my Net skills to dig up.

Possibly, you have already seen these instructions...but I will list them anyway:


Turn off your TV
Leave your house
Know your neighbors
Greet people
Look up when you're walking
Sit on your stoop
Plant flowers
Use your library
Play together
Buy from local merchants
Share what you have
Help a lost dog
Take children to the park
Honor elders
Support neighborhood schools
Fix it even if you didn't break it
Have pot lucks
Garden together
Pick up litter
Read stories aloud
Dance in the street
Talk to the mail carrier
Listen to the birds
Put up a swing
Help carry something heavy
Barter for your goods
Start a traditions
Ask a question
Hire young people for odd jobs
Organize a block party
Bake extra and share
Ask for help when you need it
Open your shades
Sing together
Share your skills
Take back the night
Turn up the music
Turn down the music
Listen before you react to anger
Mediate a conflict
Seek to understand
Learn from new and uncomfortable angles
Know that no one is silent though many are not heard
Work to change this

What I did find when searching the Web was an explanation of what one community did with the ideas, but I can't tell if they are the souce:
Vancouver and "How To Build Community"

How To Build Community Our “How to Build Community” poster is a resource for tens of thousands of people looking for ways to feel connected with their neighbors.

The lack of community many of us feel was evident to Eileen Mosca at a Vancouver city hall meeting. Well, Eileen decided to do something about it.

She contacted SCW with her idea, a guerrilla postering campaign in Vancouver! She began the process of organizing 150 volunteers to take 20 posters and a corner of the city each. It wasn’t long before she had well over her initial goal of people with at least 4,000 posters to paste.

The postering project itself became a community-building activity! Elementary students, senior groups, doctors, longshoremen, government workers, people from all walks of life volunteered to help.

Did their effort have a positive effect? To quote the mastermind of the project, Eileen Mosca: Because such things can’t be quantified I guess we will never really know. But you can be sure the posters touched people, made them think and perhaps made them decide to look up when they are walking…sing together…learn from new and uncomfortable angles…talk to the mail carrier… and maybe even dance in the streets.

Pretty cool, right?



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