# Community Strong

posted in: Blog post | 0

Wasn’t that a party!

This August in White Rock, thousands of people gathered for free Saturday night concerts sponsored by local businesses.

A free concert. I can’t think of a better way to bring a community together.

There was also a hospital fundraising dinner on the pier with hundreds participating.

Sunshine, smiling faces, dancing Zoomers, conversations with neighbours and friends. Lots of fabulous music, food and laughter.

Talk about community spirit.

Doesn’t take much to unite a community…or does it?

The word community has been in the news lately as the country reels once again from another senseless attack on innocent Canadians with horrific consequences.

A child dead.

A young woman dead.

Two police officers dead.

A young couple dead.

As the communities of Danforth in Toronto and Fredericton, New Brunswick come together to mourn and grieve collectively, we experience the outpouring of support from across the country.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who visited the makeshift memorial in Fredericton said, “…when you have a whole community …supporting you through terrible grief, it actually does make it a little bit easier…”

The initial fear and terror the neighbourhood residents feel is replaced with a collective sense of unity and ownership or what we refer to as a sense of community.

They create makeshift memorials with flowers, cards and teddy bears. They make signs which read  #Danforth Strong and #Fredericton Strong.  Their demonstration of resilience and strength as they take back their streets, is indicative of a stronger message.

People everywhere are hurting and when we demonstrate this collective outpouring of grief in full view, we are expressing our own personal sorrow which we sometimes don’t feel comfortable expressing.

But done collectively, it is cathartic and healing. Grief is like a universal language which connects all of humanity. It is a powerful force which unites us all as humans regardless of race or culture.  We all grieve differently but the outcome is the same. To acknowledge our loss and give voice to our pain.

We don’t need permission to grieve but when done collectively, it becomes easier to express ourselves.

It is healthy to grieve.  It is natural and normal.

But why does terror have to strike our streets or someone have to die before a community comes together?

And do we have to have free music concerts to bring people together?

With social isolation on the rise especially when technology often isolates us from common human connection, what do we have to do to bring community back on a daily basis?

How can we feel connected and united with each other every single day?

You can start by saying hello to your neighbour or the clerk at your local supermarket. Smile at every person you pass on your daily walk or during your usual routine.

I can think of another way as well.

Join CARP – A New Vision of Aging.

As members of CARP, we are united in advocating for healthy communities and promoting healthy aging for all Canadians. This includes living with financial security, better healthcare and a sense of social safety and connection.

Stats Canada recently released their findings of a report done on the life satisfaction among Canadian seniors today. According to Wanda Morris, Chief Advocacy Officer for CARP, “this report reinforces the importance of social inclusion as a key priority to ensure that older Canadians can live fulfilling lives.”

Be part of our CARP community and join us at our Annual General Meeting on September 20th and our annual Salute to Seniors on September 29th. Call Denice at 604-538-5778 for details.

#CARP Community Strong.

Leave a Reply