Sustainable communities abound in Asheville, NC. Up here in the mountains, it’s easy to realize the direct effects civilization has on the environment, and our community has taken great measures to protect and preserve the natural spaces around us. If you’re interested in fostering sustainable community conversations in Asheville or elsewhere, but aren’t quite sure how to get started, here are a few ideas for you:
Add a “Green” Section to Your Community Newsletter
Does your community have a newsletter or newsletter email that’s sent out regularly to residents and community members? A great way to get people thinking about the environment is to start a “green” section of that publication. Even if it’s just a short section offering three easy ways to live more sustainably, it puts the idea of sustainability at the forefront of your community members’ minds. This gets sustainable community conversations started, and paves the way for more formal conversations in the future.
Have a Community Garden? — Start There
Whether it was founded with sustainability in mind or not, your community garden is a great place to start sustainable community conversations. Many gardeners appreciate produce that is grown ethically, sustainably, and even organically, so your group of community gardeners is your best bet for a safe space to start talking about sustainability. You might consider bringing up ideas that can help make your garden more sustainable, like collecting rainwater, using recycled materials, and even starting a community compost project. Involve more of your community to engage in your sustainable practices by sharing the harvest and holding an event or two to show other community members how sustainability can bring people together.
Host a Recycling Event
Many people want to recycle and implement sustainable solutions but aren’t sure how to do it. Consider hosting a recycling event in your community where you invite community members to drop off hard-to-recycle items like batteries and electronics. With a few volunteers, you’ll be able to get those recyclables to the right destination, and then you can let everyone who donated know how many recyclables you were able to direct to the right place. When people see how much good they can do just by dropping off those materials instead of trashing them, they’ll be inspired to keep the conversation going.
Soup Night, Anyone?
If you’re looking for a way to get your community together, consider hosting a soup night. Especially effective in the cold winters when people love coming home to a warm meal after a long day at work, a soup night is a great way to get everyone in one spot. From there, you can host a speaker to give a short talk about sustainability, or you can prompt a conversation on sustainability yourself.
Just the act of hosting the soup night can get the sustainability conversation started — encourage everyone to bring their favorite soup, made from vegetables from the community garden, or local sustainable growers in your area. Since soup is inexpensive and easy to throw in a crock-pot, this is a simple, fun way to get everyone together, plus who isn’t happy around friends and a nice warm pot of soup?
Start Small and Cultivate Collaboration
The best way to foster sustainable community conversations is to start small and cultivate collaboration. The issue of sustainability is a big one, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of its implications. In the same vein, it’s important to make sure everyone in the community feels heard and can work together. While it helps to have one person to organize the group, it’s important that community conversations about sustainability still feel collaborative where everyone is involved. It’s easier to affect long-lasting solutions when everyone feels included.
Are you looking for a community that puts a primary focus on sustainability? Have you heard of High Hickory, a sustainable mountain community with a variety of properties available in Asheville, NC? Situated in the peaceful mountains just minutes from downtown Asheville, life at High Hickory focuses on sustainability and community simultaneously. Check out our gallery for a look at our community, give us a call at 866-936-5263, or find out more information about our available properties online today.