Building Community

From postcards (or bookmarks or posters) from the Syracuse Cultural Workers (a most awesome group with a ton of very cool products!): How to Build Community

  • Turn off your TV
  • Leave your house
  • Know your neighbors
  • Look up when you are walking
  • Greet people
  • 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
  • Garden Together
  • Support Neighborhood Schools
  • Fix it even if you didn't break it
  • Have Pot Lucks
  • Honor Elders
  • 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 Tradition
  • 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


How To Build Global Community

  • Think of no one as “them”
  • Don't confuse your comfort with your safety
  • Talk to strangers
  • Imagine other cultures through their poetry and novels
  • Listen to music you don't understand
  • Dance to it
  • Act Locally
  • Notice the workings of power & privilege in your culture
  • Question consumption
  • Know how your lettuce and coffee are grown: wake up
and smell the exploitation
  • Look for fair trade and union labels
  • Help build economies from the bottom up
  • Acquire few needs
  • Learn a second (or third) language
  • Visit people, places, and cultures - not tourist attractions
  • Learn people's history
  • Re-define progress
  • Know physical and political geography
  • Play games from other cultures
  • Watch films with subtitles
  • Know your heritage
  • Honor everyone's holidays
  • Look at the moon and imagine someone else,
Somewhere else, looking at it too
  • Read the UNs Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  • Understand the global economy in terms of
people, land, and water
  • Know where your bank banks
  • Never believe you have the right to anyone else's resources
  • Refuse to wear corporate logos: defy corporate domination
  • Question military/corporate connections
  • Don't confuse money with wealth, or time with money
  • Have a pen/email pal
  • Honor indigenous cultures
  • Judge governance by how well it meets all people's needs
  • Be skeptical about what you read
  • Eat adventurously
  • Enjoy vegetables,
beans and grains in your diet
  • Choose curiosity over certainty
  • Know where your water comes from
and where your wastes go
  • Pledge allegiance to the earth; question nationalism
  • Think South, Central, and North - There are many Americans
  • Assume that many others share your dreams
  • Know that no one is silent though many are not heard
  • Work to change this


p.s. this post follows up on the one called 'Community' that I did recently.

p.p.s. & building community is kind of the opposite of turning our backs (which I was talking about in my previous post), isn't it??

p.p.p.s. you can find some quotations about community in the 'Quotation Central!' section.

'Quote of the day' with this post: “What’s really important is not what’s wrong, but what is right… No community was ever built on the needs and problems of its people. It has always been built on their gifts and capacities, and the use of the assets that are there…” – Professor John L. McKnight, Director of Community Studies, Northwestern University, Illinois