Sara, a Community Builder/Animator, of finding and connecting people in the community of Killin, share a story,

“During the pandemic, (and as we come out of it), my main way of finding and connecting people in the community was to have conversations, both in real life and via a variety of social media platforms. 

Although we couldn’t mix, we were able to walk for daily exercise. It was on these walks that I learnt about so many people in the community.  Conversations happened from one side of the road to the other, or at a distance in the local park. 

Natural conversations happening in an unplanned way allowed me to find out what people are passionate about.

One of these walks, I met “Mary”. She had recently welcomed new neighbours to the village and learnt they were now shielding.  She had offered to shop and do some cooking for them.

Both Mary and her new neighbours are vegan, so it felt easy and natural for her to make extra portions of her family meals and drop them to their doorstep.  From this one conversation, I had learned that Mary was very environmentally aware, and passionate about veganism and zero waste. 

When “Eleanor” (another neighbour) posted on social media about a successful Tool Library in the South of England, and posed the question “would it work here?”, I dropped her a message, encouraging her to have a go. I asked if she knew anyone local who could help her with this. I asked if she knew “Mary”, and offered to introduce them.

A successful introduction led to “Eleanor”, “Mary” and her neighbours setting up a chat group where a further 10 people were added.

I’ve continued to connect people to the group as she I discover more locals with gifts and interests which they would like to share.

This group of residents have now launched their own Tool Library, a community repair hub and a zero waste food pantry in the village.