What scares me? Honestly, not being poor, or being unsuccessful or even dying so much (although that is pretty scary) but being alone …

Why, in such an over-populated world are so many people lonely? Surely, no one should be lonely on a planet inhabited with 7 billion souls, or a tiny island with 65 million people on, right? Wrong…

I’m not going to spout statistics, but loneliness is an epidemic.

I used to beat myself up that I needed to be stronger and less weak, that I should be able to cope on my own. But the simple truth to me is that we’re fundamentally social animals and if you put us in isolation then you get loneliness, followed by depression, anxiety and lots of other modern ills. If its not us, we all know someone who has suffered from something similar.

I’m not talking about being locked in a room, but more the daily grind of work followed by the isolation of not knowing people in our local area, not having a community (I think George Orwell called it an atomised dystopia). If you did that to a lot of animals it would probably be called animal cruelty, but do it to humans and its called life…

We invent drugs to keep us going like we’re the broken ones rather than ever examining the actual source of the problem which dare I say it could be the system that we live in, and that so many of us subscribe to without ever questioning. Work hard and you’ll be rewarded… one day… maybe…

The second world war although a terrible thing was reported to be the happiest time of many people’s lives, as it gave them a common purpose and sense of community, that they were part of something  which mattered. They didn’t have much money, or hardly any food but everyone was in the same boat and they worked for each other. For me this is what the modern world is missing (for the record, I’m not inciting world war 3..)

A lot of us work incredibly hard, we see people every day in the office or on the train but still we feel dis-connected. We return home to our family or loved one (if we’re lucky), but many of us return home to no one. And even if we have someone, what kind of strain is put on that relationship through not having the support of other people around you.

We have technology which can ‘connect’ us but we’re more disconnected than ever. Social media doesn’t seem to be very social, it just means I can find out what all my friends are doing without ever having to speak to them… OR it just shows an unrealistic view of someone’s life which when compared to your own frankly makes you feel a bit shit…

I set up the community oven not because I want to sell pizza (although I do like pizza), but because I want to connect with people in my local community and I want to help facilitate that connection between others. Maybe I’m the only one that feels this way, but somehow I don’t think I am…

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