Porcupine Real Estate Blog

Taking Community Into Our Own Hands: We Heart West’s Mission in Manchester

Taking Community into Our Own Hands in West Manchester, NH

by Mari Fontaine
President, We Heart West


As president of We Heart West, I've witnessed firsthand the incredible impact people can have when they band together around a shared vision for their community. Our grassroots non-profit is composed of homeowners and renters across West Manchester neighborhoods, united by a common belief – that if people truly want less government in their lives, then we as private citizens must take responsibility for keeping our neighborhoods clean, safe, and thriving. This self-reliant spirit translates into our core mission of facilitating volunteer-driven initiatives that directly enhance our home of West Manchester.

Our approach translates into a wide range of projects and events organized by We Heart West volunteers. On the environmental front, we coordinate neighborhood clean-ups, install pet waste stations, and support community gardens to enhance green spaces and the ability for people to grow their own food in urban areas.

We also host events explicitly designed to build bonds between neighbors. Our annual Trunk or Treat provides a safe, festive space for families to trick-or-treat and meet their neighbors. The West Manchester Day field day brings residents together for outdoor activities while showcasing local parks that many may not know about. We've found that when people use these green spaces in positive ways, it deters derelict activities that can drag a neighborhood down.

What makes We Heart West truly unique is our ability to bring together residents across the political spectrum. This past spring we organized the Manchester Volunteer Leadership Summit, which united over 18 local volunteer groups to collaborate on shared goals for uplifting our city. While we may have different philosophies, we all care about Manchester and want to work together for our shared home.

We believe that true liberty and abundant freedoms flow from vibrant communities cultivated by those willing to roll up their sleeves. At We Heart West, every event, every flower planted, and every bond of friendship formed between neighbors chips away at the myth of the helpless citizen. We aim to inspire people across Manchester to treat their city as something they fully own – because when a community's well-being rests in the hands of its people, wonderful transformations can take root.

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