For a while now, I've been interested with the idea of "the village community". I've always "done" better when I've been part of a community - be it the school community when the kids were young, our farming community or the market community when I was doing them. I think it's a natural human emotion to want to belong to a community.
One thing they've found in two of the Blue Zones that I know anything about, is that community played a large part in people surviving into their 100's. Both Okinawa and Sardina list traditional diet and lifestyle and the community surrounding them as factors to longevity. Community in this sense means family, friends and the village community. Often several generations live under one roof. We currently have 2 generations under one roof - will that mean that we'll live a longer life!
So, if community is such a big factor in health and wellness, what is happening now that we are self isolating. Grand parents are being encouraged not to see grandchildren and vice versa. Fortunately, thanks to technology, contact can be maintained, even if it doesn't include a hug! There is a growing sense of community amongst various facebook groups and this is also good for most of us, but the extreme extroverts are probably struggling! I find that the sort of groups I'm in or the pages I follow are trying to keep up more regular contact and a conversation happening, even if it is only online.
One solution I thought of for a slow coming out of isolation, is to try and stick to small community areas. For example, we live near Bungendore and most of the essential items we need are available there. We could set up "working hubs" so that office workers could work together but on their own work externally still. At least they would be working "with" people. If there happened to be a covid outbreak it could be monitored and traced back to where it started. If many people got it, then it could still be contained within that community.
The benefit of that would be that local shops and local producers are supported and people can start moving about within their community instead of being isolated. We're pretty lucky that there are five of us in this house and we go out each saturday to the local farmers market. Some people could be in a household of 1 or 2! That would be very lonely!
What will the other side of Covid-19 look like? People are learning or re-learning skills. Gardens are being planted. Chickens being bought. Bread being made. Parents are home-schooling. People are shopping at farmers markets or direct from farmers. No one is going out for coffee! People aren't travelling, planes aren't flying and cars not driving! So many things that Climate Change Activists have been campaigning for for a long time. We've been trying to get people to take a look at their lifestyles and make some of these changes. I'm not sure if there is any noticeable difference in carbon in the atmosphere - some say there is and some say not. But surely if we could keep it up, there would be changes!
We're aiming for self sufficiency with eggs. Having a grandchild around is also going to increase our resilience!
Supporting local producers - good for community resilience.
We only need one of these stickers!
We certainly need to look at being a little more self sufficient - both at a Country level and a local level. Being more self sufficient and less reliant on imported products, will make us more resilient. I think we need to be careful that our self isolation does not destroy our sense of community and that we can continue to be involved in community while also maintaining sensible distancing efforts. We are also lucky in Australia that we seem to be keeping things under control with very few new cases, but I also think we need to be careful to move away from isolation slowly to prevent uncontrolled outbreaks.
So take care out there - keep a physical distance, but not an emotional distance.