By TMoM Team Member Dennette Bailey

The negative in the world can often be overwhelming. It can leave many of us feeling helpless. Sometimes, we can relieve our anxieties and gloom if we remember that we can make a difference. And we can start in our own community.

Every individual person can improve the well-being of their community regardless of their socioeconomic background. If we need ideas, we might consider a time when we had a need. Think of how we can help a person with the same need.

Here are five ways we can make a positive impact in our community today:

1 – Vote in local elections

People tend to get excited about and participate in the presidential election. But, contrary to popular belief, the local election is the most important because it has direct implications for your daily life. Local elections are where people in the community vote for people that make decisions for their public schools, funding for roads, public transportation, taxes, parks, and recreation centers, etc. Your single voice matters in your local election.

2 – Volunteer

Our communities need us. Places of faith or blogs like TMOM are a great resource for determining where there are needs that we might be able to assist. We should also consider the schools or Boys and Girls clubs even if you do not have school age children. We can also give back to those who served the community before us by helping organizations that help senior citizens or people in nursing homes.

3 – Support local businesses

The convenience of being able to go somewhere or order online and have what we need cheaply and fast has its place. However, we should consider the positive implications supporting a local business has on our communities. Local businesses help keep communities looking vibrant. They provide employment and pay taxes which helps the entire community. In addition, they offer youth a direct look at success so that they can aspire to be productive citizens because businesses are not out in the ether, but in sight.

4 – Help keep your neighborhood clean

A community is only going to thrive if the community takes responsibility for it. We should not only rely on any state or city run organization to keep our communities clean. We must take the time to keep our own properties clean and neat and be willing to walk the block and keep it clean too. Maybe at first you are the only one, but if you are consistent, a neighbor is bound to help you. Whatever community we live in we must be willing to help keep it clean. If we help our children gain a sense of pride in their community while they are in their youth and when they are older, they will continue this sentiment.

5 – Remember your neighbors

This is not an exclamation to be an extrovert and knock on our neighbors’ doors with baskets of muffins. It is simply a consideration to think of our neighbors in a positive light. If our neighbor does not pick up in front of their house, the neighbor is ill or does not realize the importance of keeping the community clean. Try to take note of elderly neighbors and be willing to shovel snow or pick up big branches that could keep them from walking in front of their home safely. Start a neighborhood watch or host a neighborhood meeting that empowers you and your neighbors to keep your community safe and clean. Getting to know our neighbors can also help us know the people in our neighborhoods so that we can help (not judge) each other.

If we commit to doing just one of these suggestions, we will be making a positive impact in our community. If just one person sees our commitment and as a result, is encouraged to do the same, we will have inspired a movement of positive impact in our community!

~ Click here to read Dennette’s past posts about making positive impacts in your life.
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