West St. Catherine Neighborhood Association

Community Challenge -- Get to Know Your Neighbors

Jun 08, 2007

Connecting up with your neighbors

Imagine what would happen in this fine community if we were involved with each other, neighbor-to-neighbor, on the things that make a difference in our lives? I say that because research shows that it's a community's social capital, with many interdependent connections, that builds community confidence and success and makes it possible for communities to achieve great things.

In fact, even with something so difficult to manage as a neighborhood's crime rate, the most important influence has proven to be neighbors' willingness to act, when needed, for one another's benefit. Particularly for the benefit of one another's children.

We recognize that the commitment of individuals to build thriving neighborhoods also assumes that the external supports that enable trust and cooperation to flourish will respond: police, fire protection, disaster readiness, human services, public arts and recreation, public schools, etc.

Given good government, we might all ask ourselves if we are acting on our own behalf at the level of involvement that could make a widespread difference in the quality of life throughout our community. I know that many are, yet there is ample room and indeed need, for many, many more.

Think about it. I invite you to ask yourself whether you're a "typical" American. Do you know by first name your neighbors two houses or apartments to the left and to the right of you? Three homes or apartments across from you? If your answer is "No," you are a typical American.

Metro United Way is always interested in ideas that make a difference. Our network of agencies, their effective programs and dozens of community-based partnerships and collaborative efforts give life to ideas that make a difference every day. We're proud to support them, and we know they are a point of pride for you, too, because this community answers the call every year when we ask you for your support. Thousands more make a difference through their volunteer energy, serving on boards, as Every 1 Reads tutors and in community centers.

Our Community Challenge is to ask you to increase your connections with whoever is your neighbor and build the cooperative efforts that can make a lasting difference in the quality of life of your neighborhood.

And your Metro United Way is here to help. Call the volunteer connection at 566-4YOU or visit us online at www.metrounitedway.org. Imagine what would happen if everyone knew their neighbors and worked together to tackle the issues that stand between us and greatness as a community.


Metro United Way

Louisville 40202

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