What is the cause of neighborhoods in decline and fragmentation? This book pinpoints the breakdown of social connections. By embracing and getting to know one’s neighborhood and neighbors, a sense of community and shared purpose can be built. The author feels that many solutions to today’s problems come either top down or bottom up. This approach brings a foreign framework into a community which may be resisted.
He proposes using strengths within a community to build existing resources rather than inventing imposed solutions. This makes a lot of sense. The author provides examples of communities made stronger by welcoming tough dialogs and embracing values of residents rather than putting in place a framework from another place which is antithetical to the community needing help.
In reviewing social problems, the author underlines the lack of social connection, which builds on the resident’s loneliness and despair. Many families have a single parent or dual working parents without access to consistent childcare. It makes good sense to encourage communities to address these issues by identifying and connecting residents with existing resources.