Mental health and wellbeing are more spoken about now than ever before, and while this is a significant step forward, it is also important to highlight the role people in power have in the matter. Because at the end of the day, the mental and overall well being of every individual will not be complete without taking into account the prosperity and mental health of the entire community.
This brings us to the question of how we can better understand what taking care of a community looks like, and how one can push for a better quality of life.
Taking care of a community isn’t only about offering financial safety and security, but also about creating a place where every individual is able to prosper on their own. With the increased level of awareness, the prosperity and success of any organization or country are no longer limited to its economic success. Instead, a prosperous nation is one that protects and supports its people.
“Prosperity is much more than material wealth; it also encompasses wellbeing, security, freedom, and opportunity.” - Philippa Stroud, CEO of the Legatum Institute
According to the 2019 Legatum Prosperity Index, the world has come a long way in terms of prosperity, in which 148 countries report having higher prosperity levels than they did 10 years ago. And while prosperity seems to be on the rise worldwide, it is also reported that the gap between the countries with high prosperity levels and those with low ones is increasing. That is precisely why it is imperative to shed light on what prosperity really is and we can improve the overall wellbeing of the community.
The good thing is that with the significant strides many countries have made, more and more people are beginning to realize the importance of prioritizing their health and wellbeing. For instance, 8 out of every 10 people in the UK believe that the UK government should prioritize the wellbeing of its citizens over economic growth.
The fact that more people are seeing how pivotal it is to move towards creating a prosperous society is a great step forward. Because at the end of the day, what any human really wants is having access to a good job, food, housing and a sense of belonging.
But to figure out how we can make communities even more prosperous, we do not need to look any further than those most affected by it, the people. Taking into account the experiences, concerns and needs of the people is key to knowing how decision makers can help.
By asking communities about their struggles and needs, we are moving from developing a strategy that we hope will work to a strategy we more confidently believe will work. The reality of things is that financial and economic considerations are no longer enough to ensure people have access to a good quality of life. For that reason, it is instrumental to begin to understand what can actually help communities lead a healthier, safer and more successful life.
At the end of the day, the prosperity of any body is as strong and successful as its least prosperous individual. It is when people feel safe, free, and able to thrive that communities and nations become truly prosperous. Therefore, the wellbeing of the people is at the core of developing sustainable and prosperous communities.
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