Department of Family and Community Services

2.3 Experiences of neighbourhood connection

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Visiting neighbours and running into friends or acquaintances in the local area

Current positions

In 2011, NSW women were more likely than men to report running into friends while
shopping in the local area, while men were more likely than women to report having visited a neighbour at least once in the last week.

Gender gap

  • 83 percent of women and 80 percent of men ran into friends while shopping.
  • 61 percent of women and 64 percent of men reported visiting neighbours at least once in the last week.
The directions of change over time

The percentage of men who recently visited neighbours declined slightly over the last decade. In 2002, 63 percent of women and 69 percent of men reported visiting neighbours at least once in the last week compared to 61 percent of women and 64 percent of men today.

There has been little change in this indicator from the 2009 figures which were reported in last year’s Report.

Discussion

Among both women and men, older people are a little more likely to report that they visited neighbours in the last week.

67 percent of women and 72 percent of men aged 65 to 74 years reported that they had
visited neighbours compared to 60 percent of women and 62 percent of men aged 25 to 34 years.

This indicator is one of several questions asked in NSW Health surveys to indicate social capital, or people’s feelings of social connection and trust. The indicator on running into friends while shopping refers to those who run into friends and acquaintances when shopping in their local area at least some of the time. The indicator on visiting neighbours includes those who visited someone in their neighbourhood at least once in the last week.


Year collected: 2011.
Data source: NSW Adult Population Health Survey (SAPHaRI). Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence, NSW Ministry of Health.
More information is available at www.healthstats.nsw.gov.au