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Ten ways to connect with your neighbours

Plan a pup picnic, start a neighbourhood tool library or join a walking group.


Whether you’re new to your neighbourhood or you’ve lived there for a while, many people would like to make new friends and feel more connected to their community. But how do you make this happen?

We’ve put together 10 ways to make meaningful connections with people who live in your area.

1. Set up a walking group

Solo walks are nice but sometimes it’s even better to walk with other people. Together, you might discover something new about your neighbourhood. Need inspiration for your next route? Check out local walks and itinerariesOpens in new tab.

People walking holding bike helmets
Exploring the city can be extra fun with a conversation buddy

2. Ask your neighbours to help with a clean-up day

Roll up your sleeves and help beautify your neighbourhood. Hosting a litter clean up activity is a great way to make a difference, have fun and bring local people together.

3. Start a reading party

Do you like the idea of book clubs but never have time to read? How about a reading party where people mingle, read in silence, and chat about books afterwards? Or come along to a local book club at our libraries.

4. Organise a picnic with pups

Do you and your dog enjoy socialising with other humans and pups? Why not organise a picnic or a morning tea to get together. If you need some conversation-starters, check out the City of Melbourne’s top dog breeds and pet names.

A group of older adults playing cards
A game of cards at one of our neighbourhood centres

5. Try a board game social

Making conversation with someone new can be awkward but when there’s a fun game in between you and that someone, it can be easier. You can borrow games of all kinds from your local library.

6. Ask your neighbours for a day out

Going to events together is a great way to spend time with friends and meet new people. There are plenty of free or low-cost events all year around. Find free events on What’s on MelbourneOpens in new tab.

7. Plan a potluck meal

Do you enjoy trying something new to delight your taste buds? Are there rumours about there being amazing cooks in your building or neighbourhood? This is your calling to organise a potluck meal. Or bring a new friend to Local Lunch Club at Kathleen Syme Library in Carlton.

A group of older adults sharing a meal at a long table
Sharing a meal can create connections between people from diverse backgrounds

8. Organise a storytelling night

Through stories, we make sense of the world and connect with each other. Why not host a storytelling event and honour the stories we carry.

9. Start a neighbourhood tools and skills library

Got a collection of tools that could be used more? Do people in your area have knowledge and skills? Build a community ready to trade these, creating a neighbourhood tools and skills library.

10. Host a neighbours’ day in the park

What better way to meet your neighbours than a low-key picnic or barbecue in the park? Choose a park then put a call-out on social media or a local noticeboard.

Apply for a City of Melbourne grant

We offer a wide range of grants and sponsorships to support individuals, community organisations and businesses in the arts, recreation, events and business sectors.

Applicants that reflect creativity, inclusion, sustainability, knowledge and economic prosperity are encouraged to apply.

To learn more, visit Grants and sponsorships.

Explore our Wellbeing and Connection Map

Our wellbeing can be greatly impacted by the connection we have to our local community and our ability to access support close to where we live.

If you’d prefer to join an established group instead of launching your own activity, browse our Wellbeing and Connection map. The map can help you find more activities, services and initiatives that support community participation, inclusion and connection in your neighbourhood.

A group of women in a dragon boat, dressed in pink
Dragons Abreast Melbourne Pink Phoenix is one of the groups featured on our Wellbeing and Connection Map

our acknowledgement

  • Torres Strait Islander Flag
  • Aboriginal People Flag

The City of Melbourne respectfully acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land we govern, the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung and Bunurong / Boon Wurrung peoples of the Kulin and pays respect to their Elders past and present. 


We acknowledge and honour the unbroken spiritual, cultural and political connection they have maintained to this unique place for more than 2000 generations.

We accept the invitation in the Uluru Statement from the Heart and are committed to walking together to build a better future.