Fostering a Sense of Belonging in Toronto – A Case Study of Dixon
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Using the neighbourhood of Dixon as a case study, this project examines what factors influence Dixon residents’ sense of belonging to their neighbourhood. Interviews conducted with twelve residents outline how characteristics such as a lack of up-keeping of the neighbourhood’s physical state, a negative public perception of the community formed by media outlets, and hyper-policing initiatives within the neighbourhood all contribute towards a negative impact on residents’ quality of life by influencing their relationship with their space, their community, and themselves. The paper expands on this notion by examining the deep-rooted history of othering experienced by Dixon residents, dating back to the 1990’s when Somali refugee claimants initially settled into Dixon, earning it the nickname Little Mogadishu. This study is concerned with the lived experiences of Dixon residents and how various forms of political, social, and economic othering of their community has shaped their perception of place-belongingness, as well as their distrust in any body of power that can challenge their ability to foster a sense of belonging to their neighbourhood.
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Mustafa Mirza (2023). Fostering a Sense of Belonging in Toronto – A Case Study of Dixon. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/19064