Here James shares his tips on launching a new community event in your local area:
Community building events are a great way to meet your neighbours and create a close-knit community. One of the best events to organise is a shared meal or street barbecue on a Sunday afternoon.
My tips to plan a local shared meal event:
- Start with talking to your neighbours that you already know and get them on board
- Organise a meeting of some local residents to discuss the idea and agree on a plan - divide up the work so everyone chips in
- Make up some flyers/invitations and deliver them personally by going door knocking in the afternoons before it is dark.
These days, many people aren't used to having visitors knock on their door. When you go door knocking, I suggest you sing out something like “Hi my name’s James (insert your name here) and I’m one of your neighbours (Or tell them you're down at number 26). I’m here to invite you to a shared community meal to get to know your neighbours.”
2014 Australia Day multicultural shared meal and street jam in South Brisbane:
My other tips to engage your community:
- Create a local community garden: In many places, councils are happy to support community gardening because it is one less piece of garden they need to care for!
- Organise a 'Storytelling and Poetry Night'
- Plan movie nights showing unusual documentaries in the local park or people's backyards
- If you're really adventurous and have a community space, you could start up a bulk buyers organic food co-op that meets once a week. There’s a good open source site for managing co-ops called www.lettuceshare.org.
One last thing, smile and say “G’day” to everyone that you see because meeting random neighbours and people is a rewarding experience. “Each one can teach one”.
Do you have tips on launching local events? Share below!