The Transition Network’s Caring Collaborative produced a manual for helping create closer social ties and a greater experience of community in apartments and condominium buildings. Here’s a brief excerpt below, and download the whole PDF here:
Living cheek-by-jowl in a high-rise building doesn’t automatically turn residents into a community – often, quite the opposite. Our lives are busy and our schedules hectic. The last thing most city residents want to do when they’re at home is to socialize with their neighbors. Yet when they need help, the first person they turn to is often a neighbor. People are hard-wired for community. Multi-unit apartment buildings have enormous potential for becoming vibrant communities….Vertical Villages…. where old-fashion values of neighborly assistance and support can prevail. The Transition Network (TTN), using its experience of building and strengthening communities, has developed an innovative model for transforming multi-generational, high-rise residential buildings into Vertical Villages. It’s a simple, low-cost way to organize and mobilize residents, staff, and building management to become a powerful network of support when help is needed. By organizing and mobilizing neighbors, Vertical Villages build a safety net of helping hands that has all sorts of outcomes – less isolation and loneliness; relief from the stress of wondering who will help in an emergency or acute health incident; better health outcomes through shared support and information; and the opportunity for a better quality of life for everyone.