Building Strong Communities

By: Meredith
Meredith is a participant in the Emerging Leaders in Philanthropy: Changemakers class.

Asset-based community development is when groups in a community work to change and further expand their society. This development could be technological, numeral, or emotional. Asset-based community development demonstrates a community coming together to make a bigger and more significant impact. Groups include residents, voluntary associations, institutions, physical assets, economic activity, and stories. The mapping activities we did in class helped show how every group in a community works together. The map showed us that even though we may be a part of completely different societies, the same characteristics can be used in each society to create change. Mapping out our own communities and the different ones that we were a part of showed the class how much we all had in common. Most of our communities were not the same but served the same purpose for ourselves. It also showed us how many skills we have in common that we use everyday in our different communities.

Building strong communities is very important to the development of a society. Without strong communities our world would not be as unified as it is now. Strong communities create order and success that create change and advance the world faster. Strong communities consist of strong leaders and accepting members. Although some people may have more of a say or a bigger impact on final decisions, without all of the components of a community, nothing would function smoothly. Coming from the On The Table dinner discussion, our minds were much more open to the different types of communities in the world and how many of them function with and without the same characteristics. Something I took from the On The Table dinner was that even though some communities may have different levels of development, they all find happiness in their own way. No community needs electricity or running water or huge houses to have happiness. A community creates happiness based on their own needs and things they find essential to their life. This stood out to me because there are many places in the world that function perfectly well and happily, even though they don't have as many luxury items as developed cities do.