Part 3 questions: Discussion topics - Helping other people in the community
What are some of the ways people can help others in the community? Which is most important?One example might be when an adult or several adults form or take charge of a community group for young people. Maybe a sports team, club or other youth orientated organization. Neighbors can also help other people in their community by taking care of elderly people or maybe volunteering at centers which help elderly people or other members of the community. Some people help out at food banks, charity shops and other places which provide services for other people in the community in need.
Then there are community groups which protect the rights or interests of local communities where people discuss issues which might affect their community and what could be done to encourage or discourage certain developments.
Personally, I think they are all important because they all affect many people but in different ways, but in general they all have the same purpose which is to make the community in question a better place to live, which is always a good thing.
Why do you think some people like to help other people?Maybe because it makes them feel good… being able to help someone else. It might be because they were once helped by somebody in their past and they would like to return the favor. People help other people for many different reasons, it’s almost impossible to generalize, but I think that if a person can see that another person needs help it is almost a natural instinct to offer help if the person is able to. It’s one of the foundations of many societies; those that can help – help those that can’t.
Some people say that people help others in the community more now than they did in the past. Do you agree or disagree? Why?I don’t know if that is true or not. It might be the case that there is more help available nowadays for many more people who need help, but it is not always provided by individuals in the community. Sometimes it is provided by government agencies or organizations or even charity organizations. So I guess there might be more help given but it’s not simply people in the community helping other people in the community – it’s a more structured help system than in the past.
In many places, their sense of community is less than it was in the past due to the mobility of the workforce and people in general. Often, once children have grown up and found work, they don’t live in the same place as their parents and indeed their parents may even choose to move elsewhere when they retire, for example. Social mobility has increased and this has affected the fabric of communities.
What types of services, such as libraries or health centres, are available to the people who live in your area? Do you think there are enough of them?Where I live in particular is quite a small place. But we have most of the services you’d expect. There’s a medical center, library, several parks, an excellent fitness and health center with a large swimming pool and many facilities for people with physical disabilities or problems who require physiotherapy.
In general there seems to be enough public facilities for the local population because I never hear anyone complain that we don’t have something which is really necessary. If people need to use other facilities then they are available a short distance away in the next town which is bigger than where I live.
Which groups of people generally need most support in a community? Why?That would probably be the elderly and those people who have difficulty living independently or need special care services for whatever reason. They need more support than other people because they may have physical or medical conditions which make life more challenging for them or they may simply be less able to look after themselves.
Then children and young people… it’s important that they have facilities and support for them to make sure they get good opportunities to develop skills and abilities other than those at school and have safe places to play and participate in sports activities and things like that.
Who do you think should pay for the services that are available to the people in a community? Should it be the government or individual people?In my opinion it’s the same thing. I mean, individual people pay their taxes so that the government can provide many of these services such as hospitals, health centers, libraries, schools and so on. They develop these services with money from taxpayers… generally… that’s where the funding comes from.
It seems sensible that essential services are provided by the government, or under government supervision, and maybe additional services which are not deemed essential might be supplied and funded directly by the community if there is enough demand for the particular service.
Then of course there are public services which are partly subsidized by the government and people pay a reduced cost to use them. There is a fitness center near where I live which operates like that.