So you want to be more active in your community but you don’t know where to start? Because we know how scary it can be to put yourself out there we’ve compiled a list of 5 easy ways to jump in, meet people, and start belonging to a community.
1. Take a class: Whether you’re interested in Mosaic art or brewing your own beer the folks at Dabble have a class for you. The Chicago startup gives you the chance to take part in a one-night class either by being a student or being the teacher. For a nominal fee you can find others who are just beginning their love affair with sushi by taking Sushi Rolling 101, for example.
2. Join a group: So now you know how to roll sushi and you’re wondering how many other people in your city share your passion for the ancient Japanese art. On Meetup.com you can search interests by city for a comprehensive list of local group meetups. You can also start your own meetup group!
3. Volunteer: Volunteering is a great way to get involved in a community effort and meet new people. Much like Meetup.com, VolunteerMatch.com let’s you search interests by zip code to give you a wide selection of volunteering opportunities to choose from.
4. Connect on Twitter: Community pride runs deep on Twitter. Take for example @Traders_Row, an account for fans of art, music, storefronts and theaters along Lincoln Ave. On their site the local collective states, “by investing in our local economy, we support our neighbors and keep our community vibrant.” Other Chicago neighborhood “fan clubs” and organizations on Twitter include, @thisislakeview, @ClarkLincolnPk, @WickerParkBuck, @IAMLoganSquare, @RogersParkCoC. For a full listing of events in your area and what’s on your neighbor’s mind check out EveryBlock @ebChicago.
5. Know your Alderman: If you’re interested in bettering your community your Alderman is the person to talk to. Visit cityofchicago.org to find out who your Alderman is, attend ward events and begin talking to people who share your love of community engagement.
And remember, Zealous Good can help get your unused stuff involved in making the community better. Tell us what you have to donate and we’ll see who needs it and how it can better the community. We believe everyone should get to be in on the fun.