I was honoured to have received an invite to the Facebook Communities Summit (FCS) on the 8th February 2017, hosted in one of the world’s largest communities; the city of London. It is there I came to know about the power of community building.
The aim of the event was to bring together some of the most important Facebook groups currently operating on the platform to help drive forward the next stage of these valuable spaces.
I have known for a long time the value and power of a community.
Whether it is having a tight friendship circle, feeling a part of your local neighbourhood, or having a safe place you can turn to online, we all desire a sense of belonging and connection.
With the fast-paced nature of the modern world, it is not always easy to attain this connection as we would like.
And, it is even harder to find connections with like-minded individuals who hold the same beliefs and ideas as us.
That is why Facebook communities have become so important.
Honestly, I started it simply as a small-time side project that could help with my own recovery from addiction, anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts.
But, amazingly, it has grown to become so much more than I had envisaged. It is now a space where every single day, people are helped and insights are shared. I know that this group is doing its bit in saving lives too.
A place where we can turn to for instant support or inspiration isn’t always possible in our local community.
That is why having a safe space to do so online is so crucial. And, having this important work recognised by Facebook will provide my team and I with the resources and support we need to take this offline and straight to the local community.
Having the support of one of the largest and most influential companies in the world really will take the power of community to new heights.
It is brilliant that they are using their influence to bring about real change in the world, and not just on the big stage, but in local communities too.
Their desire is to create spaces that are safe, organised and engaging.
Spaces that are personal, about communicating with others, and allow for genuine connection.
This has always been my desire to make a reality, so having the alignment with Facebook is a real step forward for not only my group, but for the mental health and fitness space as a whole.
I genuinely believe that the perceptions and stigma around mental health is changing, and it’s becoming more and more normal to have the life-saving conversations that we should be having. Furthermore, I believe that the power of community and connection is behind this change.