In the year 2018, with all of the imminent problems facing the human race, community solidarity and connection is more important than ever. While people might have a sense that becoming a community leader entails an official position, this is not the case. A community leader is simply someone in the community who concerns themselves with the well-being of the individuals around them and facilitates dialogue and events that help neighbors get to know each other and resolve their differences in a peaceful manner.
A community leader can also be someone who acts as a spokesperson for the community when politicians, police or business owners need to gauge the public sentiment. More than anything else, a community leader should be someone who has a positive influence on residents of all ages and helps celebrate the culture and identity of a particular community.
In this post, we’ll discuss different ways that aspiring community leaders can help strengthen their neighborhoods and create positive connections between people.
Community Festival/ Fundraiser:
The most common and failsafe way to bring the community together is to organize a festival or block party with food, music, art, and games. For entertainment, put out a local call to musicians, dancers, and artists within the community and give them a case to showcase their skills. Serving food is a sure way to pull people in and celebrate a cuisine that’s popular in your area.
These types of parties are also a great way to meet other community leaders and volunteer organizations interested in making a positive change. When that much good energy comes together, it’s bound to create a good atmosphere and a lasting impression.
When you place a large order for custom t-shirts or custom hoodies in Canada to sell or distribute at the event – perhaps to raise money for a local charity – it also gives folks a chance to represent their cherished community through an article of clothing!
Book Drives/ Literacy Programs:
In many large cities, and especially in under-resourced neighborhoods, low literacy is a huge problem and a barrier to higher education. Organizing a book drive or an after-school program with an emphasis on reading and creative writing can provide a baseline of support to bring a D to student up to a few grades and give them a great sense of confidence.
Community gardens have countless benefits: they beautify the neighborhood, provide food, educate volunteers about gardening and agriculture and provide an outlet for stress release. People of all ages can come together to weed the garden, water, prune, harvest and just to enjoy the beauty and have a chat. Bleak urban settings can feel oppressive; a bit of color and organic life really makes a difference.
Public Art Project (Parks & Rec):
In many cities the Parks and Recs department have a budget for one-time beautification projects, you could also collaborate with public art foundations like Artscape to connect local artists interested in public installations. Colorful, uplifting art also counters oppressive concrete settings and inspires people on a daily basis. Young local artists will also get a lot out of seeing interesting art close to home and understand that snooty art galleries are not the only venue for their work.