How trustworthy do you think your neighbours might be? Could you rely on the people next door in a pinch? How often do you visit with your neighbours? A British survey by Allianz Insurance was done in 2014 to try and understand how people today see their neighbours. Another was conducted by the Eden Project in 2013. Here is what they found, the numbers are interesting:
These numbers may be from neighbourhoods in Britain, but they could very well reflect the sentiment of neighbours here in Chestermere. What do you think when you see these numbers? Are they telling a positive or negative story about the state of neighbourhood life today? If a survey was done here, what would be your answers?
There is hope for neighbourhood relationships found in these studies. They found that the vast majority of people deeply wanted better connections to others in their neighbourhoods. 75% of people would like more community spirit in their city and over half feel that a better community spirit would make them happier and help them make new friends. Chances are that your next door neighbours look forward to connecting with you, even if it’s just to help when challenges arise.
There is one number that sticks out to me the most. Almost half of everyone surveyed said that they have experienced something surprising as a result of meeting a neighbour. So whether you are shy or outgoing, give out your house key or keep privately to yourself; the fact that so many people have discovered something good from meeting their neighbours should give us all encouragement to step out and make our city better by simply connecting with those on our street.
There’s a 10 in 10 chance you have neighbours nearby. Any numbers after that, are up to you.