The importance of a strong sense of community

A strong sense of community is habitually promoted as an integral part of an individual’s wellbeing both throughout their schooling lives and in the years that follow. However, what exactly the ever-elusive “sense of community” looks like, and how to obtain it, can be an unclear and daunting prospect for many. Despite this, it is imperative for us all to strive to create a strong and diverse sense of community whilst at Melbourne Grammar, given the resources and means to do so are right at our fingertips. This is because friendships made at school, predicated purely upon comradery and happiness, can be the most meaningful in life.

For me, having a sense of community is so much more than simply having a group of boys with whom you have a group chat on Facebook. It is a mindset, a feeling, a sense of security, and a constant reassurance that your tribe, whoever they may be, always have your best interests at heart.

A community is a group of friends whom you can undoubtedly and inherently trust all of the time. It can be easy to say that you are looking out for a friend, but to actually do so, and prioritise their best interests is much more difficult, and imperative to creating this bond.

The constant reassurance of a strong sense of community is very important, especially in what can be, sometimes, a stressful school environment. Boys can find it difficult to talk about their feelings, so having access to a group of people in whom you feel truly comfortable confiding, is an effective vehicle to reduce stress. Furthermore, it gives individuals the confidence to be who they truly are, with the full knowledge that their friends will be there for them and support them regardless of the situation.

Whilst this feeling can be hard to obtain, it is certainly not impossible. Every year at Melbourne Grammar there are copious amounts of sports teams, debating teams, committees, choirs, musical ensembles and drama productions, which flourish. It is within these different environments that we see the diverse array of talents and identities within Melbourne Grammar School grow and expand. In this light, these multiple platforms are perfect ways for individuals to discover their sense of community.

While our ATAR scores are very important, perhaps the Bluestone provides individuals with something which is more fulfilling – a strong friendship group and sense of community that will last a lifetime. A sense of community is about surrounding yourself with like-minded, similarly motivated people who always push you to be the best version of yourself. This an achievable vision at MGS. You just have to be willing to embrace the infinite opportunities on offer at the School.