The Five Attributes Of Healing Community: How You Can Foster These Traits Wherever You Work Or Live

We can all improve our community's capacity to reduce social isolation if we pay attention to five key attributes of healing community.

Download this blog post as a PDF. Feel free to use this guide in your workplace or community.


1. A feeling of physical and emotional safety.

2. A sense of belonging and purpose. 3. An environment of kindness, respect, and open and honest communication.

4. Everyone's input and participation are valued, welcomed, and appreciated.

5. A strong sense of mutuality: the capacity to offer a sense of relationship with others.


Using our discussion-generating assessment survey below, gather ‘members’ of your ‘community’ (up to 100 at a time) in an exercise that begins with each person anonymously checking the boxes that reflect their assessment of the five attributes of healing community. Your community can be your neighborhood, family, religious congregation, high school or college, civic or professional association, hospital, or mental health recovery center, etc.


Average the results (takes 10 minutes) and present them in the group setting to those who have participated.


Review the results and dialogue about both the positives and the negatives reflected in the assessment. Action planning naturally emerges, because everyone wants more community and less isolation. Implementation often grows out of dialogue. Repeat the process every year to review changes that may have occurred.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. You are free to redistribute or copy this document with attribution.


If your group would like a guided discussion facilitated around this assessment process, please reach out to us. Virgil provides customized facilitation and assistance with action planning for any large or small group.

#socialisolation #HealingCommunity #healingcommunityassessment

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Disclaimer: As a therapeutic consultant, Virgil advises, advocates, recommends, facilitates and empowers, but he does not treat mental illness or addiction. While offering 30+ years of mental health experience, he is not a licensed mental health professional, but will often refer clients to professionals and programs for treatment. 


Note: Virgil has no financial relationship with any of these programs, except for Houston Methodist Hospital and McLean Hospital for whom he has been a consultant. Any consultation he gives is for educational, informational and motivational purposes only and is not meant to replace professional psychiatric, psychological, programmatic, legal or financial advice the client may need for him or herself or their family member from a licensed professional. 

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