Do you join in your local community?

I live in the sticks, so there's not a whole lot to do. We have a Senior center, but people go mainly for the meal, and bingo. I'm a diabetic so I have to watch my carbs and sugar, so I shy away from the meal because I don't know what's in it. And I just can't take two hours of "B -64".
Pretty much the same here.
 

I volunteer with a church and that is fun for me as I made some friends there and get to chat with new people all the time when I work there. It's pretty boring where I live but I am going to meet a group for dinner next month, so I'll see how that goes.
 
I have used community groups to have a social life. A senior center. Just to play cards, and have a weekly discussion group. Would rather have a close friend or two, but it is better than nothing. I was extremely lonely a while ago, and these groups were very helpful to me, because I could have social interactions.

So hard to make a real friend, as you may know.

I stopped going to my card playing group though, for 2 reasons. It is far away, and I met a good friend I can hang out with, who fulfills most of my socializing wants.

Oh, I do still go to a local community group for a weekly get-together still, since it is nearby, and I don't have to drive far to it.
 
Reading these comments gives me a good indication why existing and new residents to our community in North Myrtle Beach are resistant to join our Swim and Social Club in our community. We have 131 homes in the community and only 35 residents have joined our club. We have a beautiful swimming pool and a lovely clubhouse. We try to schedule monthly events but participation is very low. Our HOA association dues are $145 per year and membership in the Swim and Social Club is $440 per year. The HOA has no clubhouse or activities of any sort and does not even maintain an email or up to date directory. It just surprises me that new homeowners have no interest in mingling and meeting other community residents.
 
I've been asked a couple of times to run for our co-op's board. but I declined. One reason is that we know there's some shady stuff that's been going on and I don't want to be embroiled in it. Actually, I would speak up about it but I doubt anything would change and people have been known to be vindictive, so I'm not putting myself in that position. A neighbor-friend's husband was VP on the board and he saw the apathy that took place with other board members. He was the only one of them who patrolled the complex and made sure everything was as it should be regarding maintenance and repairs. Instead of being appreciated, he was ostracized, so he finally resigned.

Also, at the times I was asked, I was dealing with a heart condition that made me pretty sick sometimes, plus I'm hypertensive. A former president of the board resigned because he had similar health issues and being a board member is just too stressful.
 
I used to be in education so dealt with people each and every day. When I retired I sort of became a long wolf type of guy. I enjoy reading, travel, playing my guitar and watching old westerns. Don't want to join any group and give up my hard earned liberty. They say that "man was born free" but today I see them all in chains. I don't like to wear chains.

Our former senior center, now community center, has a large group of drop-in musicians. People like me who don't play an instrument can just watch and listen. It is a great group of people and so much fun. Each one selects a song and comes with printed copies so everyone can play his/her instrument. They go around in a circle until everyone's song is played and then they go home.

At the same center, there is a Wednesday lunch, and then everyone plays Bingo. I wash the dishes for about 80 people. I love this. It is kind of like my mountain to climb. By that I mean It is hard work and I used to limp out in great pain, but since I started working out in the gym, it is easier for me to do the job. I feel it is a great victory to get everything perfectly clean and walkout still standing up straight with a smile on face :) instead of grimacing. 😣

I keep thinking of giving up the Senior Companion Program where I vist clients, take them shopping or out to lunch or walk with them along the river in good weather or my favorites play Scrabble or do puzzles. But this is essential for so many people who need a little extra help or just to visit with someone, and there aren't enough people volunteering to do this. We have less than half the volunteers we had before Covid. I think most of us aged out because of physical problems. I am so glad I started working out in the gym, because strangers in stores would offer to help me not the person I was helping. :oops: I hate it when people see me as the old person who needs help!

Especially COVID made us aware of how serious isolation is. Our isolated people went down hill and many of them died. We had phone visits but that wasn't much help. It really bothered me that the media talked about how bad isolation was for the children, not how bad it can be for isolated people. I see many people here are glad to have their privacy and a lack of commitments and I guess if you have money, your eyes and everything else is working, you can enjoy your freedom.

My family is very community-involved and they worry about what would happen to me if I gave up having commitments 5 days a week, but I would still have the nutrition site and the community center, and neighbors to help. And I would gain the time to study and discuss things in forums. I am so thankful for the Internet!
 
I've been asked a couple of times to run for our co-op's board. but I declined. One reason is that we know there's some shady stuff that's been going on and I don't want to be embroiled in it. Actually, I would speak up about it but I doubt anything would change and people have been known to be vindictive, so I'm not putting myself in that position. A neighbor-friend's husband was VP on the board and he saw the apathy that took place with other board members. He was the only one of them who patrolled the complex and made sure everything was as it should be regarding maintenance and repairs. Instead of being appreciated, he was ostracized, so he finally resigned.

Also, at the times I was asked, I was dealing with a heart condition that made me pretty sick sometimes, plus I'm hypertensive. A former president of the board resigned because he had similar health issues and being a board member is just too stressful.

That is very unfortunate. I know such problems can come up in a person's job. That is why I stayed with volunteering instead of working for pay. You make me very thankful that I have a totally different reality. The people I work under and my clients make me feel appreciated, and those of us who are volunteering have such a sense that we are doing necessary work despite all our personal problems, and we are not going to step on each other's toes. Especially the companions want to bring in more helping people because the need is so great.

Hum🤔 is it possible my reality is different because only caring people become companions? We are working together to keep our boat afloat.

However, in the apartment complex, I have heard petty comments about the few people who take responsibility for things. It would be nice to have a big eraser and erase such people from our lives. They are poisonous and can do a lot of harm. I think it tends to be the people who do nothing for anyone who are the most apt to tear down those who are doing their best for everyone. What else do those people have to do but tear others down?
 
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Wow, I wish this area had activities like that. There were only a few things before covid and since, pretty much nothing.
You don't have a local community center? When I was studying gerontology my professor assigned me to write a paper about services for older people in rural areas because I lived in a rural area. I couldn't think of anything to say other than to move elderly people to the city where there are services. I was volunteering at the time and I could see how inadequate the rural situation is for those in their advanced years. So I am really interested in what you have to say. I am still wondering about the best way to address the needs of elderly people.

Nutrition sites have been the most successful in all communities because they provide socializing and people can develop support groups. But that barely meets the needs. The US is far behind some European countries that do adequately care for their elderly. It is really scary and getting worse!
 
I have used community groups to have a social life. A senior center. Just to play cards, and have a weekly discussion group. Would rather have a close friend or two, but it is better than nothing. I was extremely lonely a while ago, and these groups were very helpful to me, because I could have social interactions.

So hard to make a real friend, as you may know.

I stopped going to my card playing group though, for 2 reasons. It is far away, and I met a good friend I can hang out with, who fulfills most of my socializing wants.

Oh, I do still go to a local community group for a weekly get-together still, since it is nearby, and I don't have to drive far to it.
Sorry for being piggy by making too many replies, but I am really interested in the question of how do people become friends and is there something that can be done to improve this in nursing homes. This was one of the biggest problems when I was studying gerontology.

When I was a single mother working nights, it was impossible to make friends. People have day lives. Also, married people and a single person are not a good mix. When my children were young that led to some social connections so I would say sharing something in common is important. My family and another one bonded because of shared survival needs. I will visit with anyone who plays Scrabble. :ROFLMAO: My nervous system requires playing Scrabble. 🤪

My volunteer job is making people happy. That is much harder with someone who has lost sight and doesn't like doing anything. 😖 Any suggestions? What makes a person attractive to you?
 
Yesterday I attended a 2 1/2-hour meeting at the home of a friend. All of us there are involved with a group of locals who have different roles in conservation & restoration of our river system. It was a good get-together, we ate homemade shortbread while sitting around a table and planning our first-of-the-year activities.

Among other things, we sketched-out an open house with power-point visuals and commentary on facets of nature in and along the river. Plus, some audio-visual about specific restoration work done in the last year. We'll do this in mid-February. Covid pretty well restricted these public meetings, but in the past that kind of offering (in one of the local community halls) has attracted a pretty good crowd.

Besides this sort of doing-service in the community kind of thing, ordinary life here involves a lot of non-thematic get-togethers in homes of friends. Usually some potluck-style good food being part of it.
 
Yesterday I attended a 2 1/2-hour meeting at the home of a friend. All of us there are involved with a group of locals who have different roles in conservation & restoration of our river system. It was a good get-together, we ate homemade shortbread while sitting around a table and planning our first-of-the-year activities.

Among other things, we sketched-out an open house with power-point visuals and commentary on facets of nature in and along the river. Plus, some audio-visual about specific restoration work done in the last year. We'll do this in mid-February. Covid pretty well restricted these public meetings, but in the past that kind of offering (in one of the local community halls) has attracted a pretty good crowd.

Besides this sort of doing-service in the community kind of thing, ordinary life here involves a lot of non-thematic get-togethers in homes of friends. Usually some potluck-style good food being part of it.

Another word for that is civic action. That is very important to democracy and our liberty and I am afraid we have lost it and we have become increasingly dependent on "government" to take care of everything, as though we are not the government. However, I think we are becoming increasingly aware of environmental issues, and saving a river is a wonderful thing to do. Thank you for your work.
 
That is very unfortunate. I know such problems can come up in a person's job. That is why I stayed with volunteering instead of working for pay. You make me very thankful that I have a totally different reality. The people I work under and my clients make me feel appreciated, and those of us who are volunteering have such a sense that we are doing necessary work despite all our personal problems, and we are not going to step on each other's toes. Especially the companions want to bring in more helping people because the need is so great.

Hum🤔 is it possible my reality is different because only caring people become companions? We are working together to keep our boat afloat.

However, in the apartment complex, I have heard petty comments about the few people who take responsibility for things. It would be nice to have a big eraser and erase such people from our lives. They are poisonous and can do a lot of harm. I think it tends to be the people who do nothing for anyone who are the most apt to tear down those who are doing their best for everyone. What else do those people have to do but tear others down?
How nice that you are appreciated and like what you do. We can certainly remove toxic people from our personal lives, but it's not possible when living within a community. You wouldn't believe some of the things that have gone on around here! Despite those things, we continue to see improvements and I also have some very nice, helpful neighbor-friends, so that's a good thing.
 
How nice that you are appreciated and like what you do. We can certainly remove toxic people from our personal lives, but it's not possible when living within a community. You wouldn't believe some of the things that have gone on around here! Despite those things, we continue to see improvements and I also have some very nice, helpful neighbor-friends, so that's a good thing.

I have decided to volunteer for the temporary night shelter for homeless people. This program almost became nonexistent because of COVID-19. Most of the churches pulled out and now we have only one county-owned building and two churches, one for adults and another for teenagers. The shelters are desperate for help and I don't want to help because it is so unpleasant! When the people who we were helping refused to use masks or leave the building when Covid was spreading rapidly, I left the building and did not return.

I am torn. I work with elderly people and should not take avoidable risks, but on the other hand, there is a desperate need for help. Years ago I was a political activist to get help for the homeless, so I think I should accept responsibility by volunteering.

My final argument with myself is- I know I would be a horrible person if I were homeless and the weather was awful. My ability to be a nice person is the result of having security and comforts. Take that away from me and I would be a wounded animal too.
 
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Your dedication to helping others is so good to see. I once did a lot of volunteering from civic organizations to homeless children. It felt good. Some opportunities dissolved during the pandemic and I am less nimble with age and no longer drive at night. Now most of what I do is by word of mouth. I drive people to appointments or to the food bank or to the store. I hope I can keep it up for a long time. It's nice to be needed.
 
I don't want to accommodate anyone's timetable except my own after more than 50 years of working full time in offices. If it is a community event that I can drop in on, fine, otherwise forget it. No volunteering for anything either.
 


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