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The world seems to be becoming more and more fragmented. For all that the internet has allowed people even greater access to each other, this has lead to many small groups being formed rather than one large one. It’s ironic that while many people are part of several online communities, they don’t even say hi to their neighbors.
But this doesn’t mean that millennials are necessarily bad at forming communities. In fact, the opposite is true. Interconnectivity means that millennials are perfectly capable of finding people and bonding with them whether this is a small group with a niche interest or literally millions of people around the world with a common goal.
Bringing a Building Together
We often lament the loss of local community spirit but the truth is that millennials are just as capable of meeting their neighbors as anyone else. They just tend to go about it in a different way. While saying hi to a stranger in the corridor might feel a bit odd to a millennial, joining a Facebook group for the building and getting to know people that way is quite popular.
Facebook groups for neighbors and communities are great spaces to share ideas for improving the building (as can be found here) and get to know each other better. You can also set up events and fundraise for various projects such as planters for communal areas. As people get used to seeing each other online, they are much more likely to talk to each other in person. This might seem backwards but hey, that’s the digital age for you.
Forming Social Groups
Millennials are all about forming social groups though they don’t go about it in the same way that previous generations have. For example, the local church is mostly out while fitness classes are very much in. Rather than bonding with the people immediately around them, millennials are much more likely to travel to find others who share the same interests.
Building a community this way is great as it is clearly contributing to the fitness of a whole generation. However, this kind of group only works if it gets people out of their homes and doing something active. Social media is a great platform for getting things set up, but millennials show that they still need to meet real people too.
Tackling Issues at Home
Unlike generations before them, millennials are having to deal with significant social and environmental issues. Though society may seem fragmented, the gravity of environmental and climate change is bringing more and more people together and protests around the world were lead by this generation. And it’s not just millennials. Young people are reaching out to older generations to help them tackle social issues too.
Though their communities don’t look the same as previous generations, millennials show that community spirit is still alive and well in the 21st century. Rather than having a single local community, millennials are building multiple communities for themselves on a micro and macro scale.