When I came to live on the Interlake, it didn’t take me long to find out about the history of the area, and the importance of the railway in the development of many of the towns along Highway 6. But now that transport is gone, its interesting to observe the struggles small towns have in keeping their identity.
When it comes to social cohesiveness, towns that have good health facilities, a library, sporting organizations that caters to all ages and community arts i.e. a choir, local bands, theatre group, heritage museum and a place for visual artists to show their work, survive and flourish because they support each other. Social health far outweighs profits.
I’ve lived in tourist towns in Australia, where the people who own businesses don’t live in the town. Their focus was not in the community but in money. The common link in the chain is supporting and sustaining each other; sharing joint events, communication and representation in activities, good networking between towns and an openness for change. I’m reminded of the old saying, ‘united we stand, divided we fall.’