A huge part of creating a sustainable way of life along permaculture principles is about caring for our planet but it is also important to consider ethical and political issues. I think it would be really easy for us, in our position of privilege here in the developed world, to hide ourselves away in our little rural or urban bubbles. If we did so, however, we would not really be living in a sustainable way. Anything we do individually in terms of waste reduction, recycling and growing our own is just a drop in the ocean. Communities must come together for true change to be achieved.
It is important to get involved with other local like-minded people. One thing you could perhaps do in the future to engage with community issues is to go to seed and vegetable swaps. Organic gardeners growing their own are always keen to forge links with other organic gardeners. Excess produce can be shared with friends and neighbours and perhaps even with the wider local community.
Skill sharing is a vital part of community engagement and everyone has something to contribute and can teach someone something. Consider offering to teach someone about something you know, and learn something new from them in return. Over a whole community, skill sharing can increase resilience and self-reliance and, in turn, make for a stronger community overall.
Diversity is key to successful communities. When a community is diverse, different attitudes, takes, opinions and skill-sets will combine to form a group that can stand on its own two feet. As in the natural world, when diversity is missing, a community cannot thrive.
It is also extremely important, of course, continue to vote and to engage with wider social and political issues outside the immediate community. Apathy may be argued to be the greatest enemy to true sustainability. Be sure to register your displeasure at certain governmental measures with which you may disagree. Be part of the change rather than just expecting other people to make change happen for you.