Castro Valley is a great place to live, work, and raise a family. I’ve already written about . The other day during my regular walk around the neighborhood I started to think, "Is there anything I can do to make Castro Valley even better?" I guess I was feeling like I wanted to give back to sustain what I already love about this town.
I’ve come up with little, significant, and big things we can all do to keep Castro Valley awesome:
Smile. This is a little thing but I’m always amazed by how positive a smile can make me and other people feel. Practice smiling, even when you don’t feel like it, and you’ll make your world a little brighter
Be neighborly. Let your neighbor know that you like the new flowers they planted in the yard, ask how things are going and listen, offer to watch their house if they go on vacation, or bake some extra cookies during the holidays and give them to your neighbors. We all get so busy and forget that we share our surroundings with our neighbors who just might repay the favor you offer sometime in the future.
Practice random acts of kindness. This kind of goes along with smiling and being neighborly but you can widen the circle of goodness in Castro Valley without a lot of effort. You can hold the door open for someone, let someone go in line in front of you, pay the tab for someone behind you, or return a grocery shopping cart to the designated area. For more ideas, visit the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation web site.
Buy local. We’ve had a huge campaign recently on Castro Valley Patch to buy local due to the construction downtown, but one of the best ways to keep our community thriving is to get what you need right here. Rather than going to Home Depot get your DIY supplies at or . Instead of throwing out your favorite shoes get them fixed at . Get your caffeine fix by visiting , , , or . Check out local entertainment at , , or . Look around at what we’ve got right here in Castro Valley, you’ll be surprised.
Pick up trash. While you’re walking around town you can keep Castro Valley clean just by picking up trash. You could be in a parking lot, on the sidewalk, or even in your neighborhood. A little goes a long way. Just think: If everybody in Castro Valley did this, our town would be really clean!
Be a role model. Whatever you do in life, think about the effects you have on others. You might be a business owner, and how you conduct business or treat customers not only helps your bottom line but also might inspire someone else to start a business. Or you could be a homeowner, and how you maintain your property could have a positive impact on your neighborhood. As a resident of Castro Valley, how can you represent our town in a way that makes people either want to visit or maybe live here?
Volunteer. Newly Paul, a Castro Valley Patch contributor, did a great article on . There are so many ways to give back and you can even tie volunteer activities to your passions, like working with children or animals, reading at the library, or nurturing by volunteering at Eden Hospital.
Get involved in local issues. The is a great example of local people getting together on a common issue. Another example is the people who show up on the corner of Redwood Road and Castro Valley Boulevard in front of Safeway to protest war. Even with controversial issues, Castro Valley demonstrates our tolerance and support of free speech, which makes it a perfect place for you to get involved and be heard on local issues.
Arrange a neighborhood event. Pick up on the momentum from the recent and arrange your own neighborhood event. This could be a BBQ, a potluck or game night. You could go big time and invite local businesses to sponsor your event or keep it low-key with a simple “meet and greet” block party. It might require a bit of coordination but you just might find yourself meeting new friends and feeling more connected to your neighborhood.