Socially Connected Communities

Healthy Places by Design builds and supports a movement to advance action that results in more socially connected and equitable communities.

What's New?

Register now for the next webinar, "Exploring the Intersection of Civic, Social, and Community Health" on May 29 from 3-4 pm ET. We will be joined by Anita Chandra, Vice President and Director, RAND Social and Economic Well-Being, and Michael Stevenson, Co-Director, County Health Rankings & Roadmaps.

Be sure to hold time on your calendars to join the discussion group immediately following the webinar (4-5 pm ET) where you can dive deeper about applying learnings with webinar guests and attendees. A link to join the post-webinar discussion group is provided during the live webinar.

Register for the May 29 Webinar

Download the "Why Economic Health Matters for Socially Connected Communities” Resource Guide now! It provides an array of guides, articles, reports, videos, and books on the topic, as well as highlights from the webinar featuring Elizabeth Garlow of New America and Amanda Janoo of the Wellbeing Alliance.

Download the Latest Resource Guide


Socially Connected Communities Network

Healthy Places by Design’s Socially Connected Communities Network aims to inspire action that results in more socially connected and equitable communities by exploring ideas and strategies that reduce social isolation and strengthen social ties, especially for those who are most marginalized. The Network has four components designed for a variety of learning styles and to address the continuum of community-led change. Click on the icons below to learn more about the Network components. And sign-up to stay up-to-date and receive our Socially Connected Communities Network e-newsletter.

Sign-up for the Network e-Newsletter 

Bi-monthly webinars provide opportunities to learn about socially connected communities. These one-hour webinars will present key and emerging content and community examples on focused topics, and explore intersections between social connection and community/societal wellbeing topics. The webinars are for community-focused change agents (i.e., government, nonprofit, community, philanthropy), members of existing and emerging local- and state-level coalitions/partnerships, and anyone else working to reduce social isolation and loneliness, and strengthen the social fabric in communities.

Access on-demand recordings & slides from Network webinars

Discussion Groups are hosted immediately following each bi-monthly webinar and provide a space for attendees to dive deeper with the webinar speakers and other attendees who are working to improve social connections in communities. The purpose of the discussion group sessions is to explore ways to apply ideas and strategies learned in the webinar within their communities. 

A link to join the post-webinar discussion group is provided during each live webinar. Interested participants are encouraged to put a hold on their calendars from 4-5 pm EST on each webinar date.

Resource Guides are a companion piece to the webinars and discussion group sessions that provide a summary of key points and useful links. Co-developed by Healthy Places by Design and webinar guests, the Resource Guides provide easy access to key information about social connections sub-topics for anyone interested in improving socially connected communities.
Access the Socially Connected Communities Network Resource Guides

Peer Connection Sessions are affinity-style virtual meetings where people who are working in similar ways or focused on similar sub-topics can connect for learning, exchange, and problem solving. Healthy Places by Design hosts and facilitates Peer Connection Sessions based on emerging interests.  

Contact us to share ideas for future Peer Connection Sessions.

Socially Connected Communities Network Events

Our Focus on Socially Connected Communities

Social connection is vital to healthy and equitable communities. Social isolation is rooted in community design, social norms, and systemic injustices that keep people and neighborhoods apart. People in our country and around the world experience soaring rates of social isolation and disconnectedness, with profound impacts on the health and wellbeing of communities. The good news is that strong social connections can boost a person’s survival rate by 50%, and there are viable solutions for improving opportunities for social connection in communities.

Healthy Places by Design issued the Socially Connected Communities: Solutions for Social Isolation report – a first of its kind to raise the issue from individual to community solutions. Read the report and access companion pieces including a report overview, video, Action Guide for Philanthropic Leaders, and Action Guide for Local Government and Community Leaders.

As a thought leader in the field, we also publish blogs and additional resources co-produced with partners.

Full Report

Report Overview

Action Guide for Philanthropic Leaders

Action Guide for Local Government and Community Leaders


Essential Resources on Socially Connected Communities


Communities in Action

Healthy Places by Design supports action that leads to more socially connected communities. Learn more from the communities we’ve partnered with:

Activating Boston Project

Supporting Black Health through Socially Connected Communities, Charlotte, NC

Supporting Social Connections in the Mat-Su Borough, Alaska


The Action Guide for Building Socially Connected Communities is an interactive toolkit designed to provide local leaders and change makers with a road map for promoting meaningful social connection and belonging for community flourishing. The Action Guide was developed by the Foundation for Social Connection, Harvard University's Human Flourishing Program, and Healthy Places by Design, with support from Einhorn Collaborative. We invite you to partner with local leaders and members within your community to co-create effective, sustainable social connection action plans using this guide.

Go to the Action Guide




Let’s talk about ways to work together to improve socially connected communities!

Contact us