Building very local resilience
Very local networks
Very Local Networks is an idea that is gaining ground in rural and urban areas. It establishes contact, fosters support and resilience, enhances trust, and promotes community based primarily on specific geography and everyday concerns.
Here is a useful template which explains the concept and how it works. Your can easily edit this to suit your local conditions and personal details if you feel motivated to start a Very Local Network where you live. It should fit on an A4 sheet, with space at the bottom for the tear off, non-email return slip. Please let us know how it goes!
(if you would prefer a Word doc. copy of this template, please email Roz Brown)
A (place) Network
Happy New Year to everyone on our (place name). We realised that, in spite of being near neighbours, many of us only meet infrequently, maybe when passing along the road. We thought maybe there was something we could do to help keep us all in contact, especially if there is a need or a crisis.
So we’d like to offer a small, free, low-key service in the interests of (place) resilience in these testing times: it’s called a local network. It’s different from Neighborhood Watch because you can use it for any help you need, anything you might want to offer, getting information around, finding information, or anything else useful you can think of that neighbours might want to connect with.
Report a lost/found pet Need to borrow a long ladder
Report livestock on the loose Seek manure
Need extra fruit for jam making Offer spare produce
Feel a social event coming on Need a lift/like to offer a lift
Need a prescription collecting Need another pair of hands for a small job
Need the plants watered/chickens fed when away
If you think of all the times you’ve needed something or had spare capacity/supplies, how much easier would it have been if you could have sent one message and had it go to everyone on our patch – people you know and trust but rarely see?
What I’m offering:
You message me via email (or telephone me) and I email everyone on the list with the details. When your need or offer is fulfilled, let me know and I tell everyone on the next email so we don’t duplicate.
What if you don’t have email? Then we buddy you up with a near neighbour who does. You simply ask them to send the email, and they pass messages on to you, either by phone or printed out and put through your letter box (or, revolutionary thought, I know, by dropping round for a cuppa?)
Remember a couple of winters ago when the swine flu pandemic was a real threat? Everyone was asked to arrange a buddy who could get medicine for them etc? This is what, in the old days, people did for each other as a matter of course. These days, we are spread out, sometimes isolated, and don’t always have ready access to support systems. If there is a crisis – whether it’s to do with public health (like a flu epidemic), severe winter weather (last year the postman didn’t make it to us for 5 weeks), or any other kind of man-made or natural disaster, we will all cope better if we have a strong resilient very local support network in place. Let’s make a start – fill out the details below, tear off and return to me if you don’t have email. If you do, send me a message with your details to:
(your email address), giving your name, address, telephone number/s etc. I’ll get things moving, and maybe we can have an inaugural get together over tea up at (suggest place).
(Your name, address, telephone number and email address)
I’d like the (place) Network to keep me in touch
I don’t have email, so please buddy me up with a neighbour who does………(tick)