Several forms of social capital can be recognized in daily human activities. One of the ways that I have experienced social capital in my life is through birthdays and weddings. I have attended and organized several birthdays. During the celebration, people often gather and form networks that lead to cooperation and mutual understanding. As a result, people work together to share ideas, play and create a pool of resources and human skills to generate social and economic benefits. Attending various meetings and visiting professionals, friends and relatives also helps people to learn new things, ideas and methods of doing things. As a result, social interactions through meetings may enhance creativity and development of a new concept that may change lives positively. Social capital is also experienced when someone participates in community projects, charities, and social support functions (Harvard Kennedy School of Government, 2012). For example, donating blood in a hospital allows someone to survive and participate fully in normal functioning of society. Social capital is also expressed through volunteering to teach a school, create awareness, plant trees, and offer special skills to a non-governmental organization. Such services help other individuals and organizations to improve their performance, change their behavior, gain skills, and become productive in the economy.
A juvenile can build social capital by growing in a good neighborhood where mutual trust, connections, collective action, and mutual relationships are promoted (Enfield, 2008). A neighbourhood in which people take action on behalf of others for the benefit of the entire community produces responsible and moral youth. As communities work collectively, they share responsibilities and create a network of role models to build the characters of young people positively. A good relationship between a juvenile and a non-family adult creates social capital because the adult can be a role model, providing advice, moral support, resources, knowledge and skills that help the youth to grow physically and morally.
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- Enfield, R. (2008). Monograph: Social Capital and Implications for Positive Youth Development. Davis, CA: Center for Youth Development, University of California.
- Harvard Kennedy School of Government (2012). 150 Things you can do to Build Social Capital? The Saguaro Seminar: Civic Engagement in America. Cambridge: Harvard Kennedy School of Government