Why Happy Communities Are Important
Communities where we know each other, belong and care for each other have been the foundation of human well being since humans became humans. It is only in recent decades that we have placed self-reliance and individualism as more important than community. And we are learning what a big mistake this has been.
Our own wellbeing and the well being of our children and grandchildren depends on whether our communities provide us with connectedness, belonging and caring.
So how are we achieving this? We have three focused initiatives that raise the importance of community in our lives:
Good Neighbour App
Healthy, supportive and safe neighbourhoods are where neighbours know each other, support each other and look out for each other. Instead of building relationships online, they build relationships by meeting, talking and getting to know each other.
The Good Neighbour App is an anti-social-media, social app. It facilitates people connecting with each other the old fashioned way, meeting and talking.
Happy Community Project Program
We are all caught up in the stories we share with others. Our stories guide our behavior. Communities have stories and they guide the behavior of the members of the community. When the story changes, so does the behavior.
The Happy Community Project Program enables citizens to change the story of their community towards a more connected, belonging and caring community.
Happy Community Builders Platform
People around the world are working to make our world a better place. They tell us they want two things:
- To share their experiences and knowledge and talk out ideas that they can be more effective with other community builders.
- To be part of a collective force that can make communities a top priority in our societies.
The Happy Community Platform is where active community builders can collaborate for their effectiveness today and can also belong together to have a powerful, collective voice of experience to drive systemic change.
Our Genesis story
In 2012, Barry Braun was about to become a grandfather. He was reflecting on his grandchildren’s future in a world of ever increasing chaos, selfishness and divisiveness. He decided to do something about it.
His first attempt was Women Reshaping the World. The idea was that if the world is getting messed up, put somebody else in charge. This was successful in that it attracted and enabled 700 women to commit to making the world a different place. But he couldn’t figure out how to make it financially sustainable.
He met Dr. Bruce Dienes who was an expert in community psychology. After many long discussions, Barry came to understand how important community is to our fundamental well being. After reading may research articles, he concluded there were three factors on which communities could build a sense of well being for its citizenry.
- Connectedness across differences
- Caring for each other
With this knowledge, combined with his own experience of cultural change and human behavior, Barry develop the Happy Community Project program. This program has received international acknowledgement for its innovative and effective way of creating a cultural shift within community. Having proved its effectiveness in several communities (Windsor NS, Sackville NS, Halifax NS, Stewiacke NS, Kolkata India and Kabale Uganda, and Boulder USA) he built on this experience to launch Happy Community Builders in 2022, and Good Neighbour App in 2023.
His biggest learning is that community is not an outside job. Communities only work when community citizen take their responsibility as citizens to make their community the community they want. There is no “they should…, there only is we should….”
Be part of the we should that makes community wellbeing a #1 priority.
“We need to remember our true happiness comes from simple things like: belonging, social connectedness, meaning, sufficiency and safety. If we build our communities around these basic ideas, we and our children can have a better world. They will get the support they need to deal with the future.”
– Barry Braun, Founder
Our future story (which includes you!)
Our vision is that every community is a happy community. Our goal is to create the possibility that our children will be able to find a community where they can enjoy the happiness that comes from belonging, social connections, meaning, sufficiency and safety. As they move into an uncertain future, they can have more smiles and feel better because their neighbours will be there for them as they will be there for them as well.
The great news is that together we can create these communities. More and more people want this future and are embracing the kind of tools that Happy Community project provides.
Meet other people just like you
An easy way to get involved is be part of the Happy Community Coffee Connections. We meet on the first Thursday of very month. Coffee Connections is an open discussion where you get to meet other community builders, share ideas and build connections.
The Happy Community Project
Providing Community Champions with the tools to build a strong foundation for their community.
Recognition & Partners
We have proven the effectiveness of the Happy Community Project Tool Kit. Our success has been recognized internationally by several universities and organizations. Our partners are critical to our success.