What is a Community?

What is a Community?


The word community might bring to mind a
variety of thoughts and images. Webster’s dictionary defines “community” as a
unified body of individuals with common interests, a common characteristic, or living in a
common location. Reflecting on this definition might make you
think that you belong to a number of different
communities, which is probably correct. A community could be characterized by age
group, ethnicity, gender, religion, location, or profession. As a high schooler you belong to a community
of students. You might also identify yourself as belonging to
a certain racial community. If you attend a church, temple, or mosque then
you are part of a religious community. Living in a certain neighborhood or area makes
you a member of a geographical community. You see communities are sometimes
overlapping and one person can belong to a vast number of
different communities all at once. You might be a member of some communities
by default, while others you joined by choice. For example, you are a teenager, and therefore
are a member of the teen community whether
you like it or not. You might also be a member of a soccer community because you enjoy and
choose to participate in the sport of soccer. Sometimes other factors in our lives influence us
to join certain communities as well; for example,
a parent, friend. medical condition, or event. Regardless of the community you are a part of or the reason you joined, every community has
resources that help to fulfill its needs. These resources are known as community
assets. Community assets include positive activities,
facilities, and services that help to keep its
members healthy. Some examples of community assets might be
a meditation garden, fitness center, library, hospital, park or
playground. Which community assets are available to you in
your area? It is obviously beneficial to have a large variety of
assets in your community. Just as important as the number of assets
however, is how they work together to serve the
community. Collaboration amongst people, and the efficient use
of the resources of a community can maximize
the benefits to its members. How does your community work together to
serve its people?

Author: Kennedi Daugherty

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