Nikhil recently got a promotion and was being transferred from a small city to a metro. The family, though thrilled about the substantial hike in salary and perks were a little apprehensive. (ahh..Settling down in a new and big city can be quite daunting)…
They had heard that people in big cities, sometimes didn’t even know their immediate neighbors. But, when the family actually moved, they were pleasantly surprised.
Settling-in issues simply faded away once Nikhil and family became part of their new connected neighborhood.
What are Connected Neighborhoods?
Connected neighborhood is a place where the locals residing in a particular area or township are connected, can quickly come together to collaborate on an effort and provide timely help, information and services to make life easier for one another.
They believe that most activities in various spheres of our daily lives can be streamlined using modern technologies and the Internet. Everyone is connected to each other in an electronic and mobile network, can reach out to each other to discuss matters, seek and provide information, help others and get help in the shortest possible time.
As part of a connected neighborhood you are never alone, no matter what the situation – whether it’s an emergency such as rushing a family member to hospital, handling a fire due to a short circuit or anything else.
The Need for Connected Neighborhoods
Today, with more nuclear families in existence, the erstwhile support system provided by a joint family is almost unavailable. If the parents of a child can leave him to play at the neighborhood friend’s family and be assured he’d be taken care of while they get some important work done, it is really helpful. When neighbors are connected, it works out to be beneficial for everyone because whether need or crisis, help is always on hand.
Following are some of the innumerable benefits of connected neighborhoods:
Easy access to local information – In today’s busy world where everyone is short of time, local communities can help you get easy access to information regarding daily requirements such as which is the nearest hospital, mall or supermarket, how to contact a reliable electrician, carpenter or dry-cleaner and lots of other must-know details.
Sharing of experiences – Everyone faces tricky and not-so-pleasant situations at some stage in life. Sharing experiences though local communities regarding how such issues were tackled can go a long way in helping others avert similar situations. Awareness regarding various safety and security issues can be spread throughout the neighborhood with ease.
Trustworthy advice – When you need advice regarding a nearby summer camp for your toddler or a suitable math class for your teenager, you would generally ask your friends and local contacts. They might not know about these or suggest something inconvenient at the other end of town. Browsing the Web might display options you’re not sure about. In such a scenario your local communities might come up with the best solutions in terms of proximity to your home, reasonable fees as well as feedback about the quality of teachers and more.
Information about emergencies – Local communities can serve the purpose of providing important alerts. If there’s a short supply of a particular commodity or shops are planning to down their shutters, being forewarned can help you stock up in good time. You could also get information such as the sudden breakdown of your child’s school bus, the cancellation of trains due to flooding of tracks or some untoward happening in your area.
Economic benefits – If you wish to save on your fuel expenses, you could join a car pool in your area to go to work or for pick up and drop facilities for your school children. To avail of group discounts in the purchase of items, getting in touch with the local communities would help you get great bargains. Even negotiating for services such as getting your house pest-controlled or painted would be easier if done in a group.
Social Networking – Whether you wish to organise and publicise an event or know about upcoming events in your area, your neighborhood communities can help you out. Interest groups can be formed with like-minded people who believe in issues dear to your heart. In a community, parents can discuss common issues related to their children and students can seek help regarding sticky assignments. You can also organize get-togethers and even find partners for a game of badminton or tennis with ease.
Business Needs – Using neighborhood communities, you can expand your client base and procure supplies at the best rates in your own vicinity saving on precious time and transportation costs. Professionals can seek out experts in the field as mentors. You would probably find the right contact in your own vicinity if you wish to buy, sell, hire or exchange something.
In effect, connected neighborhoods are based on the basic premise that life is all about being there for one another. Because the community belongs to everyone, most actions are conducted with honesty and integrity. So it’s a win-win situation for everyone. Local circles not only bring efficiency into daily lives but also a feeling of reassurance that there’s always someone to help out when needed.