When Cornerstone began focussing on regeneration the idea focussed on the physical transformation of areas that had been neglected.
The idea was simple; Cornerstone would build high quality buildings where there once was a derelict building, this would change how an area looked, bring in new residents thus transforming the area.
Whilst that is still part of the plan we realise that we have to go deeper to bring about the sort of change we wish to see in the areas that we are working.
We realised we have to be intentional about helping our new residents build connections. Connections with each other and connections with their new community because we believe “life is better when you’re connected”.
That phrase is not just a nice soundbite, it is scientifically proven to be true and has been accepted in academic literature for decades. Back in 1988 the respected journal Science stated that “…studies which control for baseline health status, consistently show increased risk of death among persons with a low quantity, and sometimes low quality, of social relationships.”
The starkness of that quote and the broader message within the paper that social relationships play a major role in determining an individual’s health.
Motivated by that insight and captured in the phrase “life is better when you’re connected” Cornerstone have gone about designing its own Community Programme called CommunityLife. We are being supported in this by an American organisation called Apartment Life who deliver community programmes to 3 million residents across North America. We are adapting what they have done by increasing the importance of connecting with the established community as well as adapting some elements to better suit the local culture.
Cornerstone will be integrating CommunityLife into its developments as they are constructed.
For more information have a look on our website; www.cornerstoneni.com/communitylife
To access the Academic Paper (Social Relationship and Health; House, Landis & Umberson; Science; 1988) Click here; https://www.researchgate.net/publication/19756223_Social_Relationships_and_Health
Cornerstone is a purpose-driven business that seeks opportunities to transform cities by developing property and building thriving communities.
Cornerstone NI Ltd, Innovation Factory, 385 Springfield Road, Belfast, BT12 7DG