Belonging and Civic Muscle

Belonging and Civic Muscle is an indispensable vital condition that we all depend on for our health and well-being. Social support through friends, family, and other networks contributes to our practical and emotional needs, enhances mental well-being, helps us navigate the challenges of life and reinforces healthy behaviors. People with a stronger sense of efficacy, belonging and social connectedness tend to live healthier, happier lives.

At the community and neighborhood level, social cohesion strengthens social ties and engenders collective attachment. Higher levels of social cohesion are associated with higher levels of trust, cooperation and social capital, providing the necessary foundations for creating healthy patterns for working together across groups and sectors, building the infrastructure for community members to co-create a shared future. These patterns can create a virtuous cycle – working together supports building stronger communication, develops a sense of connectedness and mutual obligation. As sense of being valued and cared for within community grows, people become more confident and willing to participate in community, contributing to its vibrancy and affecting change.

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