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Community cohesion, resilience and health development in regional Australia

  • Year: 2007
  • Author: Galbally, Rhonda
  • Journal Name: 9th National Rural Health Conference
  • Publisher: National Rural Health Alliance
  • Published Location: Deakin West, ACT
  • Country: Australia

Many Australians are living under pressure of social change and its consequences. People in rural and regional areas often live with additional stresses particular to rural communities. This paper discusses community cohesion and its relationship to resilience and the development of health and wellbeing. To emphasise the transitional nature of modern society, it discusses a raft of societal changes, such as participation of women, an expansion in the number of family configurations, the expansion of technology, reactions to disability, the value of caring, environmental changes, globalisation and the urban drift. These changes have social consequences. Many issues are beyond our control (with associated adverse health and wellbeing outcomes), but one aspect that can be influenced is 'community infrastructure', involving participation and engagement with community groups. Community groups provide a sense of control, hope and future, and belonging, all of which increase levels of resilience.

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