How You, As a Parent, Can Make a Positive Change in Your Community
For better or worse, every community is changing. We can’t stop change happening, but there are ways to get involved and promote positive changes that will improve the lives of whānau.
Here are 5 simple guidelines to being a part of the change you want for your community.
1. As parents, positive change starts with us
As parents, we are responsible for protecting and promoting the well-being of our children.
Part of that is getting behind positive local initiatives that stimulate hope, and setting the expectation that, as the world continues to change, the community will continue to prosper.
People who are not yet parents are probably not thinking about such things, so it lands with parents and grandparents to protect the interests of children and families in a rapidly developing world.
2. Align yourself with a clear vision for your community
A vision is an expression of intent. It’s a statement about what’s possible, and what life could be like. It’s a bridge to something better.
It might be something you came up with yourself, or it might be an idea that has been kicked around for years. Make it ‘your vision’, and encourage other people in the community to do the same.
3. Every vision needs a champion
For a vision to become a reality, someone needs to step up and lead. A leader must be able to communicate the vision clearly, and have the trust of the community. A good leader should be able to face down criticism with integrity and respect, and keep the vision alive through uncertainty.
If you would like support in this area, visit S.K.I.P. They work with families at the local level to help turn a positive vision into positive change.
4. Talk about your vision as much as possible
Talk about your vision to friends and whānau, neighbours, and people at the playground. The more a vision is shared, the stronger it gets.
At this point, If it’s not a good vision, it will die a natural death. People will smile and nod, but little else. However, if it’s a vision worth fighting for, people will get behind it and offer their support.
5. Seek help from established community groups and leaders
Community organisations, such as social clubs, societies, and charities, all ready have the ways and means of influencing large numbers of people. The lions and rotary are two examples of nationwide clubs that exist to support local community initiatives.
If you can get in front of local community organisations such as these, and sell your vision. You have a good chance of getting support to make it happen.
For more information on how you can build better, safer, more vibrant communities, visit www.community.skip.org.nz/our-approach-whanau-centered-change/
Author: Parent Village aims to provide relevant and research based information to parents and caregivers.