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Community is vitally important, as the pandemic showed us!

The Problem:

Our society has been drifting into a ‘keep-yourself-to-yourself’ mentality. It was becoming hard even to say

Thinking of smiling or greeting?
  • Would they wonder what I want?
  • Or think I’m ‘one of those people’ they can’t get rid of?
  • Would I be ‘invading their private space?’

It all seemed too difficult, and so many of us tended to pass others by, head down, no eye contact. 

No ‘permission to smile’?

The Fall-Out:

Then, with the Coronavirus pandemic, there was a wonderful upsurge in community spirit. How to reignite that, make it a permanent feature of our society? Otherwise we’ll see a return to:

  • Less neighbourly support for those who need it
  • Unmet need of help (e.g. with shopping for elderly people)
  • An ever-greater burden on an already-overstretched public sector
  • More isolation
  • More loneliness
  • Less encouragement and belonging

How to reaffirm and refresh that community spirit – and make something of it for the future?

The Answer:

We need to make a change and that requires people power! Here’s how we can all take part:

  • Start smiling and greeting again, especially where we live
  • Take opportunities for simple friendliness
  • Work with neighbours to support elderly people on your street.
  • Use those new links to start a Street Association details here
  • Help us bring our mission to life where you are
  • Join with local stakeholders to create a Permission to Smile campaign partnership where you are.

Permission to Smile song, performed at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall as part of Youth Proms 2019 – delightful!

What we did in Birmingham, plus a personal message from Sir Lenny Henry!

 Neighbourhood organizations

Neighbourhood organizations can also play a vital role as local catalysts – churches, community centres, schools

More Information!

 Join the friendliness revolution!

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