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Welcome to Permission to Smile

How can we turn a ‘keep yourself to yourself’ society into a friendly, positive and encouraging one?

Here’s how we can make it happen:

The Problem:

It should be as simple as saying 

  • Will they wonder what I want?
  • Or think I’m ‘one of those people’ they can’t get rid of?
  • Am I ‘invading their private space?’

It all seems too difficult, and so many of us tend to pass others bye, head down, no eye contact.  No ‘permission to smile’?

The Fall-Out:

A lack of friendliness can lead to a lack of friends – and:

  • Less neighbourly support for those who need it
  • An ever-greater burden on the public sector
  • Less community spirit
  • More loneliness
  • Less encouragement and belonging
  • Missed fun!

How to fix this?

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, especially where we live
  • Take opportunities to chat (waiting in a queue etc)
  • Invite neighbours round for a cuppa
  • Suggest a Street Association for our own street – details here
  • Display one of our stickers in car or house window – download here
  • Support Permission to Smile on social media

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

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!

Please now sign up as a supporter, boosting the campaign’s strength and allowing us to keep in touch through an occasional newsletter.


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