When we have an opportunity to interact, when we have an opportunity to feel a sense of belonging, when we have an opportunity to access information, experts, and peers who feel the same things and experience the same things - or maybe feel different things and experience different things - we have the opportunity to build a community.
But there are some keys here to building a community. There are some keys to being part of a community. Honestly, they can be quite simple. But what we've found is that what is simple in concept can often be difficult in implementation. We call these keys the ABCs of community:
"A" stands for access.
"B" stands for belonging.
"C" stands for community.
You see, we cannot have true community until we have access and belonging for all.
If you have belonging but not access, you are not including everyone in the equation.
If you have access but not belonging, you are merely providing space but not engagement.
C is only achievable when A and B are both parts of the equation. A + B = C happens when we go from access and belonging being exceptions in our community to being expectations in our community. And it all starts by having a conversation.
Access plus belonging equals community. It is only by working together that we can ensure that everyone in our community truly has access to and belongs to our community.
It's A + B = C.
It just adds up.
The equation of solving for community first starts by having a conversation. Be a part of the conversation. Join us at OCALICONLINE 2023!
To hear more about what it takes to create and foster community, listen to Episode #26 of the Inspiring Change podcast to hear more from our Executive Director, Shawn Henry.