Human beings are, by nature, social creatures who depend on one another both for instrumental and emotional supports. When people have others they can turn to in times of need – either for help with basic necessities or simply for encouragement - they are better prepared to overcome life’s challenges and seize life’s opportunities.
Belonging to a strong social network that requires communication and mutual obligation makes people feel cared for and valued. Research has shown that people who feel a stronger sense of belonging to their local community tend to live healthier lives and have fewer mental health challenges than those who lack emotional connection.
The sociability of a place also impacts safety and crime. When people know and look out for their neighbors, and when they gather in public spaces, it can serve as a deterrent to crime and violence. Crime and violence are key underlying factors in determining the health, or lack thereof, of a neighborhood or built environment.
We believe that efforts to enable and enhance social connectedness across all stages and ages of life are vital to the health of our community and its residents.