Make It a Village Again

I go to an art class (which is ace) at the local community centre, so I get the centre’s emails. A while back, their email newsletter said that they wanted to change their offering a bit, to attract new audiences to the community centre and they were looking for ideas. I wrote back that a women’s group might be nice – a place for local women to meet each other. I met with the centre staff to discuss the idea, then whipped up a poster in Apple Pages to advertise an initial “ideas session” – so we could see how many local women are interested in having women’s groups, and what kinds of women’s groups they would like to exist.

womens groups poster
(part of the poster)

We had about 15 women turn up, which might not sound like a lot, but it makes for a decent sized group. I find that around 12 people is about the maximum size for a nice community group meetup, so 15 was pretty good. The manager of the community centre asked if we could go around the table and if everyone could introduce themselves and say a little about why they were there. It was lovely hearing from everyone – I realised I’ve missed all the meetups I used to go to! – just hearing the introductions, and about what they’re looking for.

One woman was talking about how she’d like to engage more with the local community, and said something like: “I’d like us to make it a village again,” which really resonated with me.

I met with a life coach last month – I was curious about life coaches and there are some things I like to experience just because I’m curious about them (personal stylist was another one!) and after talking with her for awhile, she reflected her summary of “me” – some of the key topics were:

  • community
  • women
  • improving things
  • being a good human
  • problem solving
  • bringing people together.

I thought about it afterwards, and yes, that is a pretty good summary! All the things I’ve loved doing – from our street party to MaMoDaBe – it’s basically all been about community, if not those other topics too.

I keep coming back to the idea of “make it a village again” and what that means.

Anyway, I don’t have a point here, just writing in my online diary, you know how it is.

As for the women’s groups – a bunch of ideas came out of the first session – a cycling group, a “Social Sundays” group,  women’s book group, evening art & craft classes, a support group for women who have experienced loss – but the one that piqued my interest (and I never thought someone would suggest!) was an informal art meetup, similar to Ladies Drawing Night or Social Sketch. I LOVE this idea! I wanted to start one, like, a year ago, but wasn’t confident that anyone else would be interested. So I hope that this idea launches. I’m in.


  1. Michelle says:

    Are you going to see the Life Coach again, or was it a one-time-thing?

    I can imagine that you are the catalyst, one of the centres of a community. An organiser, a doer, a changer, a clumper (people clump around you?) Making a village in a suburb is a great vision. Bring the family back to the neighbourhood.. it’s gotta be a good thing!

    • Fox says:

      Sorry, I thought I replied to this ages ago but it didn’t save! I didn’t feel like it was worth seeing the life coach again. It’s very expensive and while it was nice to have someone hear my story and summarise “me” back to me (which is something I find hard to do), I didn’t get the feeling, “oh, I have much to learn from this person,” which is kinda what I wanted to feel (if I was going to continue).

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