Imagine getting a postcard from a stranger in the mail that details the best parts of living in a certain neighborhood. Well thanks to something called the Neighborhood Postcard Project, this is actually happening worldwide.

[How to Choose a Neighborhood]

Through positive personal stories written out on a simple postcard, residents are able to not only learn more about various communities, they’re actually forming meaningful connections.

The Goal of the Neighborhood Postcard Project

The overall goal of this project is to revitalize troubled neighborhoods. Spreading positivity helps bring hope to members of the community and even highlight the best parts of the town or city.

For example, one person wrote about the Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco, boasting about its diversity, while another person decided to write about the Laurelhurst Theater in Portland because of its entertainment, beer, food and walkable distance from nearby neighborhoods.

[The Importance of Walkable Neighborhoods]

The History of the Postcard Project

This project started fairly recently (in April of 2013 in San Francisco) thanks to Hunter Franks. He picked out certain communities that were recognized for crime, poverty and violence and decided to utilize postcards to share the great things about those neighborhoods.

Franks believed that the negative aspects of a neighborhood shouldn’t dictate whether or not it’s a good place to live. The members of these communities wish to change people’s points of view about their neighborhoods. It’s easy for people to make assumptions about certain areas, and this project is a way to move those perceptions in a positive direction.

These postcards have created quite the stir, and the project has expanded well outside of San Francisco. In Connecticut, for example, neighborhoods such as Stamford, New Haven, Bridgeport and Hartford are bringing together people of different backgrounds, regions and generations. It’s amazing how a simple postcard in the mail can help alter someone’s perspective and turn the world into a more uplifting and hopeful place.