Despite all of the online connection we have through social media many people do not feel connected or part of a community in real life. Your neighborhood is one of the first places you can start creating community. We have 15 ideas to turn neighbors into friends.
Hang Out on Your Porch or in Your Font Yard
If you live in a home where you park in the garage, enter through the garage and hang out in your backyard it is very hard to chat with your neighbors. Think about making your front porch or front yard a place to spend time. Just being out and about will start conversation with your neighbors.
Living next to other people is bound to bring up some tensions. Try to be a good neighbor by keeping your property maintained, be respectful of loud noise and clean up after your pets. Common courtesy goes a long way.
Organize a Block Party.
This is a big one, so it might be good to bring in a few more people to help you organize. A block party is a great way to get the whole neighborhood out and having fun together. Some people may never come out and talk to you on your front porch, but a block party feels more open and you can meet a lot of people all at once.
Host a backyard movie night.
Treat the neighborhood to your favorite movie. If you live in a condo or apartment complex you could use the clubhouse for this event. Just remember to keep it PG rated so all the neighborhood feels like they can attend.
Welcome New Families.
When you see a moving van in your neighborhood make sure to welcome them! You can bring over baked goods or is you want to be extra helpful bring them info about local restaurants, service providers, parks, etc. It is always helpful to get the inside scoop on your new town.
Start a Neighborhood Club.
Start some sort of neighborhood club that meets monthly. It could be a book club, wine tasting, cooking, gardening, walking or anything else you think might be if interest. It is a lot easier to get people to participate if they only have to walk a few houses down and it gives you some real time to get to know your neighbors.
Shovel Your Neighbor’s Sidewalk
If your neighbor is older, unwell or even just out of town when you get a pile of snow shovel it for them. Some neighborhoods fine people when they do not clear their walks and it can be a job that is hard for some. Also, you never know when you may be out of town and need someone to shovel yours.
Shop locally if you live near a business district.
If there is retail near your neighborhood shop there! Not only are you supporting local business, but you just might run into other neighbors doing the same.
Share Small Gifts at Holiday Time
The holidays are a perfect time to offer a small gift to your neighbors. It could be baked goods, a small gift card or even a bottle of wine. It is a nice gesture and gives you an opening to introduce yourself or reconnect.
Welcome New Little Ones
When you know that a family is expecting a new addition there are some very helpful and fun things you can do to congratulate them and make their transition to a larger family easier. You could organize a meal train so they do not have to worry about cooking, decorate their porch or yard to welcome the baby when they come home from the hospital. Or, if they have older kids that need to get to school, the bus or activities see if there is any way you or someone else in the neighborhood can assist.
There are a million ways to build community within your own neighborhood, the main thing to remember is to get out of your comfort zone and say hello. Your neighborhood is already a community, but you can make it a community of friends with a little effort.
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