Communities and Social Media

Australians Abroad: Utilising Facebook to establish and maintain a sense of community for Australians living overseas


The paper will explore the growing and evolving subject of Australian individuals who choose to relocate overseas, establishing a new sense of community through the virtual networks offered through Facebook, and utilising its other messaging platforms to remain in contact with family and friends back home. Facebook is a platform that generates a strong sense of community, enabling its users to form and maintain connections with family and friends. Social media platforms, such as Facebook significantly reduce isolation, particularly in the case of the COVID-19 global pandemic, which resulted in social distancing and lockdown laws. Facebook demonstrated the ability to mitigate these feelings of isolation by allowing people to remain connected. Similarly, Facebook networking communities provide a platform through which individuals are able to obtain real-time answers about questions pertaining to moving abroad, from first-hand perspectives. A virtual Facebook community allows for individuals to virtually meet others with whom they may not have otherwise interacted, had they not shared similar circumstances. This also provides them with the opportunity to meet these people in person through organised meetings, events, and other social exchanges to encourage interaction, allowing expatriates to feel part of a community, and hence, strengthening their sense of belonging and identity. There are some challenges associated with moving abroad, in that individuals in certain regions may have minimal or complete lack of access to the Internet, and hence, Facebook, and as such, do not have insights into the valuable information shared through this platform. This may also make it harder to maintain contact with friends and family back in their home country.

Key Words

Community/Communities. Network/Networking. Virtual Community. Online Network. Facebook. Living Abroad. Expatriate. Communication. Support.

Moving overseas can be an enticing opportunity for those who want to explore and experience new environments, cultures, people, and activities. (Mao & Shen, 2015). Many will have their own personal reasons for doing so, whether it be for a change in lifestyle and routine, to travel more, or to gain more life experience. However, moving away from family and friends, and into unfamiliar surroundings, can be a daunting experience, particularly when there is not a strong support system in place. (Mao & Shen, 2015; Nardon, Aten and Gulanowski, 2015). Many individuals regularly connect with their family and friends, maintaining the relationships and sense of identity left behind in their home country. This has been made more convenient with continuous advancements in technology that have led to increased digital platforms through which individuals are able to connect, share, create, and learn. One such medium is the social media site, Facebook, allowing its users to engage with all these capacities within one centralised platform, and enabling virtual communities to be established. Eysenbach et al. (2004), describe a virtual community as, “social networks formed or facilitated through electronic media.” These online communities can be established for various purposes including to gather information; build relationships; to develop a social identity; to help others; or to gain a sense of belonging (Porter et al., 2011). Facebook communities, such as the group, Aussies in London, allow Australians to connect with family and friends back home, and to form new relationships with like-minded people over shared experiences, topics, or circumstances, particularly concerning living abroad. These virtual communities and the provisions to remain connected to an individual’s previous sense of self, ultimately minimise feelings of anxiety, uncertainty, and ambiguity, thereby strengthening their belonging to various communities.

Facebook’s online communities can provide a platform through which to communicate, thereby minimising or preventing isolation for those living abroad. Relocating to a new country can create feelings of loneliness and homesickness, in which an individual can long for the surroundings and community they are familiar with. However, these feelings can be significantly reduced when communicating through social media and online sites, such as Facebook (Cao, Hirschi & Deller, 2014). Although this cannot completely replace body language, emotions, or feelings of affection, it is still an effective and ideal way for individuals to correspond with those back home, allowing them to form new connections within their new surroundings. Feelings of isolation were exacerbated during the 2020 global COVID-19 pandemic, when many Australians, particularly those living abroad, were unable to see their family and friends in person. Around the world, physical touch was discouraged, social distancing guidelines were enforced, and lockdown laws were implemented. This meant those who relied on physical interactions and connections had to do so through digital means (Hofhuis, Hanke & Rutten, 2019). For many of those living in lockdown in foreign countries, the isolation was heightened. Fortunately, many online platforms and social media sites such as Facebook, had built-in features to enable individuals to stay connected with their networks, albeit virtually. This had a positive influence on the ways in which individuals managed the uncertainty of the unprecedented situation, and aided in alleviating feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Similarly, the affordances of online community Facebook groups, such as Aussies in London, allowed those who were away from family and friends, or could not return home for important events, to connect with one another and to find comfort in their shared experience of being isolated. This is still applicable, regardless of a global pandemic, as individuals may have other circumstances preventing them from returning to Australia and connecting with loved ones. Nonetheless, establishing a support system within a new country of residence, can still have a great impact on minimising feelings of isolation by bonding with those in similar circumstances, and providing strong support for one another in times of need. This can cultivate a strong sense of belonging and allows individuals to develop a sense of social identity, knowing they are an integral part of a virtual community (Porter et al., 2011).

Researching to decide to move abroad can be overwhelming, particularly when you may not find answers pertaining to your unique situation. Speaking to someone else who has had first-hand experience can be comforting and enables individuals to anticipate the situation and be prepared, eliminating feelings of uncertainty and anxiety (Kraimer et al., 2001, as cited in Canhilal, Canboy & Bakici, 2020). Virtual communities depicted through Facebook groups, such as Aussies in London, are often set up for the purpose of sharing information with each other, specifically regarding Australians living abroad. Sharing this information, allows for relationships to be built and a strong sense of belonging to be established, as individuals can gain more perspective and insight into each other’s experiences. Individuals can ask and answer questions, allowing for real-time answers, which are not limited to time or place (Hofhuis et al., 2019). This first-hand data depicting personal perspectives may prove significantly more valuable to an individual, than commercial recommendations and research. This may ease any feelings of nervousness, providing some solace in anticipating the situation or circumstance and hence, may be perceived to be highly trustworthy and reliable sources of information.

The wide array of content that is shared within these virtual communities such as Aussies in London, is not limited to any specific topic concerning their expatriate situation. Individuals may source employment, homes to rent, suggestions on ideal dining or entertainment activities, and other information pertaining to establishing a new life and routine abroad. Such information would not be as accessible had it been shared through a different platform, or had to have been experienced by the individual themself, before knowing the outcomes (Porter et al., 2011). By being part of a valuable virtual network, individuals may ascertain data that can greatly assist in their pursuit to learn, solve problems, and make decisions concerning their experience of living abroad (Porter et al., 2011). This information can then be validated and in turn, individuals communicating it are greatly helping others through sharing their own experiences. This can generate a strong personal connection between both individuals, whether they are providing the information or consuming it. Overall, this may cultivate a sense of belonging to the group, as individuals know they are integral to their virtual community.

Meeting new people and having to form new friendships when moving overseas can be a challenge, particularly if individuals may not be able to partake in activities that would allow them to meet others outside of their immediate surroundings. Having an online community of people with whom individuals are able to communicate regularly, and forming relationships with others that transcends time or place, allows Australians to meet others they may not have otherwise met, had they not been part of this virtual community (Porter et al., 2011). By being a part of an online network of like-minded individuals, community members are able to build valuable relationships and form strong social connections with each other. The content and interactions formed on these platforms can foster participation and engagement, as individuals can bond over their shared experiences, circumstances or other anecdotes relating to living abroad, or their home country of Australia.

Despite meeting through an online community, individuals are able to organise in-person meetings or events, in which everyone will have the opportunity to socialise and meet those with whom they have only been communicating virtually, strengthening their sense of belonging to the group (Porter et al., 2011). By organising events that are specifically designed to cultivate inclusion, particularly during times when expatriates may feel the loneliest, such as during Christmas, New Years’ Eve, and other holidays spent with loved ones, Australians are able to minimise feelings of homesickness, as they have established a strong sense of community within their new country (Demes & Geeraert, 2015; Geeraert & Demoulin, 2013, as cited in Hofhuis et al., 2019). Such events ensure that those who are isolated or have yet to meet new people abroad, can do so in an environment where they are made to feel welcome and comfortable, validating their feelings of being part of a strong network. They are able to establish and strengthen relationships with other Australian individuals, of whom they may have otherwise not met, had they not been part of a virtual community. This empowers them to expand their social networks, both virtually and physically, and to develop a strong support system during their expatriate experience (van der Laken et al., 2019, as cited in Canhilal et al., 2020).

Unfortunately, there are some challenges associated with connecting through an online community or network, as opposed to physical groups. Individuals who do not have access to the Internet, or who do not have a Facebook account, are unable to connect with the online groups on this platform, and do not have insight into the valuable information shared by others (Canhilal et al., 2020). Currently, 89% of the Australian population are active Internet users, the majority of whom utilise it to complete daily tasks such as paying bills, looking for product and service information, or for directions (Statista, 2018). They are not necessarily engaging with social media sites such as Facebook, particularly for the intended purpose of consuming expatriate information. Thomas, Wilson and Park (2018), highlight that 79.9% of active Internet users in Australia utilise it for the purpose of social media networking. As such, those who are not actively participating or communicating through social network sites such as Facebook, are unable to join and belong to virtual communities. This may make it more challenging to meet new people, as individuals will need to rely on physical social interactions to do so. There are also those living abroad who may prefer to not partake in expatriate meetings, both in an online and offline sense, in favour of immersing themselves in the new country’s culture (Cao et al., 2014). In turn, such circumstances may promote a digital divide, in which individuals are not across the same information as others, due to lack of digital resources. This can have a detrimental effect on an individual’s sense of self and belonging, particularly if they do not have strong or established physical networks (Nardon et al., 2015). This may be exacerbated further if an individual is living abroad and is away from familiar surroundings and their immediate support system. 

Additionally, individuals may find it difficult to maintain strong relationships with family and friends in Australia when they are unable to utilise Facebook’s messaging, audio calling, and video calling functions, therefore relying solely on other social networking sites, or resorting to traditional forms of communication. This may be due to having little or no Internet connection, thereby minimising the opportunity to remain in constant contact with those back home. This may result in feelings of loneliness, homesickness and isolation, as they are unable to maintain a strong sense of identity and belonging. Thomas et al., (2018), highlight that the availability and distribution of resources available online ultimately underlines greater social and economic inequalities within Australia, and as such, these issues will need to be addressed before all individuals are afforded the same digital opportunities, particularly for the purpose of establishing a virtual community. 

Despite certain obstacles that may arise in establishing a virtual community, it is evident that online interactions are an integral component in developing a strong support system, particularly for Australians living abroad (Haythornthwaite & Kendall, 2010). Nardon et al., (2015, p. 42), highlight that social support is critical for an expatriate’s adjustment to their new country, and can help to minimise uncertainty and ambiguity, allowing them to feel at ease in their new surroundings. Furthermore, Nardon et al., (2015, p. 42), emphasise that technology-mediated social assistance, demonstrated through sites such as Facebook, has had a positive impact on an individual’s transition to a new country, highlighting the importance of forming connections with others within a community, to strengthen one’s feelings of belonging.

Ultimately, relocating overseas can be a unique experience for each individual, with either beneficial or challenging outcomes. No matter an individual’s own situation, it is evident that having a strong sense of community can greatly assist those who are planning to, or who are already, living abroad, providing support and a strong foundation on which to build their new life. A virtual community can assist in gathering information; helping others; forming and maintaining relationships and a social identity; and hence, facilitate a strong sense of belonging. This will result in reducing feelings of isolation, allowing Australian individuals to form new friendships, whilst still utilising the same platform, Facebook, to maintain relationships with those back home in Australia. Similarly, individuals are able to gain information from a first-hand perspective, enabling them to make more informed decisions regarding the expatriate experience. These communities can transcend time and place, allowing for real-time questions and answers. Additionally, having an online community in which to confide, to converse with over shared experiences, can allow for individuals to meet other people who they may never have had the chance to meet, had it not been for a virtual community. Although there are undoubtedly obstacles and disadvantages to having a virtual community and not a physical support system when relocating overseas, personal experience and research dictate that these online communities, particularly those utilised through Facebook’s platform, can have a positive effect on those who are looking for new information, solace, and connection, whilst still maintaining bonds with their loved ones back in their home country of Australia.


Aussies in London. (n.d.). In Facebook (Group).

Canhilal, S.K., Canboy, B. & Bakici, T. (2020). Social support for expatriates through virtual platforms: exploring the role of online and offline participation. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 1-32.

Cao, L., Hirschi, A. & Deller, J. (2014). Perceived organizational support and intention to stay in host countries among self-initiated expatriates: The role of career satisfaction and networks. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 25(14), 2013-2032.

Eysenbach, G., Powell, J., Englesakis, M., Rizo, C., & Stern, A. (2004). Health related virtual communities and electronic support groups: Systemic review of the effects of online peer to peer interactions. BMJ, 1-6. doi:10.1136/bmj.328.7449.1166

Haythornthwaite, C., & Kendall, L. (2010). Internet and Community. American Behavioral Scientist, 53(8), 1083-1094. Retrieved from doi:10.1177/0002764209356242

Hofhuis, J., Hanke, K. & Rutten, T. (2019). Social networking sites and acculturation of international sojourners in the Netherlands: The mediating role of psychological alienation and online social support. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 69, 120-130.

Mao, J., & Shen, Y. (2015). Cultural identity change in expatriates: A social network perspective. Human Relations, 68(10), 1533–1556.

Nardon, L., Aten, K. & Gulanowski, D. (2015). Expatriate adjustment in the digital age: The co-creation of online social support resources through blogging. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 47, 41-55.

Porter, C. E., Donthu, N., MacElroy, W. H., & Wydra, D. (2011). How to foster and sustain engagement in virtual communities. California Management Review, 53(4), 80–110.

Statista. (2018). Active internet users as percentage of the total population in Australia from 2015 to 2018. Retrieved from

Thomas, J., Wilson, C., & Park, S. (2018). Australia’s digital divide is not going away. The Conversation, March 2018. Retrieved from

15 thoughts on “Australians Abroad: Utilising Facebook to establish and maintain a sense of community for Australians living overseas

  1. This is a great paper, Rebecca. I’ve never lived outside of Australia, but I imagine if I moved overseas, having an online connection to people in the same boat as me would be incredibly comforting. I also really like that you discussed online community as a means of achieving in-person community. The idea of connections starting online initially, and moving to face-to-face meetings, is something that occurs regularly but I didn’t think about it when writing my own paper. I wish I’d touched on that element of online communities in my own work, it’s a great inclusion and perspective. Thank you for sharing your work!

    1. Hi Silas,

      Thank you for taking the time to read my paper.

      I absolutely agree that online communities will often lead to in-person communities, which is great that individuals will be able to interact utilising the affordances of both. I think these social interactions complement each other well.

      Thank you again for sharing your insights!
      – Rebecca

  2. Hello Rebecca,

    What a great read! I thoroughly enjoyed your paper and had never realised the impact of being part of a virtual community has on those settling in to new surroundings. I have never had the opportunity to travel much or live overseas and have never had the experience of being a member of such a community. The way in which you explain all your points and use wonderful examples as the ‘Aussies in London’ Facebook group really gave me a far better understanding of the importance of these groups and the role they play in assisting those seeking a new life in another country. I am sure that having that sense of camaraderie with others in a similar position gives all parties a great sense of community and friendship, especially in difficult times whilst learning new customs and a different way of life.
    No doubt the members of these Facebook groups would agree that they are an invaluable asset to them in their everyday lives in their new country.
    I thought there was one sentence in your conclusion that summed up your paper perfectly for me which is ‘having a strong sense of community can greatly assist those who are planning to, or who are already, living abroad, providing support and a strong foundation on which to build their new life.’ I’m sure these Facebook groups provide that support and foundation its users are searching for.
    Thank you for a very interesting and well written paper Rebecca.


    1. Hi Bernie,

      Thank you for taking the time to read through my paper and share your insights! I am happy you were able to learn something new, despite not being able to relate to it personally.

      Your sentiments are absolutely correct that being part of a virtual community helps to instil a sense of comfort and camaraderie amongst those who are living abroad. Naturally, these virtual communities are becoming more prevalent today, as people utilise social media platforms more frequently.

      Thank you again for reading my paper and sharing your thoughts!
      – Rebecca

  3. Hi Rebecca,
    Your paper really resonates with me and I found it very interesting. Your paper focuses on the Australians abroad but having lived in Australia for 2 years, I’ve always found comfort in having people from Thailand living in Australia as well as it gave me the sense of community and a sense of safeness I was looking for. It also gave me a sense of home which is what Australia started to become for me.
    Facebook is an amazing social platform in terms of establishing and maintaining a sense of community for those who need it due to the various tools it has to offer – such as groups and pages.
    There are a lot of groups online via social media that has allowed people to feel at home whilst being abroad but what I found in Sydney especially is that there was a whole street dedicated to Thailand and this gave me a sense of home as well.
    Great paper! this was very different and very fascinating

    1. Hi Saranya,

      Thank you for taking the time to read through my paper! It is interesting that although you may not have had the same perspective as me, you were able to resonate with the sentiments of living away from your home country and relate it back to your own experiences.

      I am glad that you now consider Australia to be your home, whilst still finding comfort in connecting with Thailand. Are you a member of any of the online groups enabling you to remain connected to Thai culture and information pertaining to living in Australia? If so, do you find yourself actively meeting people through those means or through in-person interactions?

      Thank you again for taking the time to read my paper and share your unique insights!

      – Rebecca

  4. Hi Rebecca,

    Really enjoyed your paper, was something completely different from what I’ve been reading throughout the conference. It’s something I have experienced after living overseas for most of my adult life and a lot of your thoughts resonated with me.

    I always found comfort having Australian mates when I was living abroad. People I could share unique conversations with about things only someone from Australia could understand. When this group went home or moved on, I found this was when homesickness started to creep in as you’ve reported from your research, in particular the Nardon et al. article which was an intersting insight. So that was funny for me to have that reaffirmed about social support from members of your home country when living overseas, despite not thinking about it from that angle.

    I however did not choose to use social media and digital technology to meet these people, it always seemed to happen organically which was nice. Seemed as if everyone knew another Australian living in the places I lived, so I met them through those means. I always found the idea of doing it digitally as cheating and not trying to experience the culture and people of the country I resided in. My experience was that it was rather easy to meet other Australians without social media, but might be different in non-English speaking countries given I was living in England and Canada.

    I find it interesting that there is not more physical, brick and mortar communities in overseas countries for Australian’s to meet. For example, living in Canada there was an Ukrainian club, Italian club and other places for those cultures to meet in person without having to coordinate digitally. I wasn’t living ina. big city either and these places existed and seemed to thrive. Do you think that Australia’s digital literacy plays a part in these communities not being necessary? Given most ex-pats have benefited at some stage from Australia’s advanced technological society and comfortably navigate digital communities.

    I find it interesting that our culture isn’t as prominent in forming these sorts of physical overseas communities compartiavely. However, it seems as if there are digital communities facilitating these interactions per your paper.

    Thanks for the read, was a refreshing topic to read on.


    1. Hi Declan,

      Thank you for taking the time to read my paper – I am glad you found it refreshing!

      It is interesting that you were able to relate to certain aspects of my paper, because when I moved back home to Australia, I didn’t find many people who had had similar experiences, other than those who I had met whilst I was living there.

      I completely agree with your sentiments that you could have unique conversations with other Australians, and that you met them through mutual friends. I found this to be my experience too. When I moved into my apartment, it was in a building that was completely occupied by Australians, with the exception of one French lady! It definitely made me feel a lot more comfortable, knowing that there were others who were in similar situations to me that I could relate to. Of course, also having the affordances of the digital community through Facebook was a great help in facilitating some of these in-person social interactions, or providing insights into how to stay connected with Australian culture.

      I agree that there aren’t as many physical locations or places for Australians to meet overseas. Although, there was an Australian, Kiwi and South African bar in London called The Slug (I believe this name has recently changed), which was a great way to meet other Australians organically. Similarly, I found that the various Australian cafe՛s or shops were a great place to meet other Australians, or feel as though you are back home. Do you think these sorts of physical communities are more prominent in countries where the majority of Australians are likely to live, such as the UK?

      I do believe that Australia’s digital literacy means that people may not have to actively go out seeking to form social connections, because they are digitally savvy, and the use of social media allows them to have these interactions virtually. My own experiences dictate that a mix of both virtual and in-person communities are vital in remaining connected to Australia whilst living abroad.

      Thank you again for taking the time to read through my paper and share your thoughts!
      – Rebecca

      1. Hi Rebecca,

        Thanks for your reply.

        I know when I was in Vancouver, there was an Australian pub which I actually never got to as I was usually only there for a weekend event. Seems very Australian that our cultural hubs were centred around drinking. I think you’re right that these places predominantly exist in Australian-heavy cities. I’ve just always got the sense that other cultures had a cultural centre in several medium to large cities around the globe. No research to back that up, just a general observation in my travels.

        I suppose my low usage of social media played a part in me not connecting with these digital communities, however if I didn’t find it so easy to organically meet Australians, I might have.

        Thanks again,

  5. Hi Rebecca,

    I made mention in my original comment about posting the link to one of the members for your paper in an expat group I am in here in Germany.

    The reply from her:
    Liz Holland
    Jeremy Porteous Rebecca’s article is a great read and I’d recommend it to all the OzKonnekt members


    1. Hi Jeremy,

      Thank you for taking the time to read through my paper – I am glad you found it enjoyable!

      I agree that virtual communities help people to stay connected to Australia and also to the new communities in their new country. I am glad to hear you feel part of the expat group in Germany, despite not being able to meet up in person. I also happened upon ‘Aussies in London’ when looking for information on moving there, rather than trying to find an expat community. Do you believe yourself to be an active member of the expat group, or not as active, but still find it to be a great source of information? I have observed that many people within the ‘Aussies in London’ group are either looking for a sense of community and information, whereas others may simply only want to gather insights and not necessarily partake in any of the social aspects (whether they be virtual or not), which would be for various reasons, of course, like not living close enough to others in the community.

      Thank you so much for sharing my paper with your group! It’s really great that this topic can resonate with so many people.

      I look forward to reading your paper.

      Thank you!

  6. Hi Rebecca,

    As an expat living in Germany, I found your paper a great read!

    You are very correct that having a expat community in a new country, be it only online in my case, is a great way of feeling less isolated – especially when moving to a country on a whim and having a major case of culture shock and limited language skills!

    I happened to stumble across the ‘OzKonnekt – Australia Club, Rhein Main’ by chance rather than looking for the Aussie Expat community here in Germany. I was at the Consulate in Frankfurt sorting out some paperwork due to getting married here and they let me know about the Australian Shop (was having vegemite withdrawals by this time) and met one of the expat members who was looking after the shop at the time.

    Unfortunately for me, I live about 3 hours away from Frankfurt and the expat community, so I don’t get to participate in any of the planned events – although at present COVID is making life here a pain. However knowing that I am part of a very active expat group that is free to discuss anything and everything.

    In promoting the conference, I posted this site to the group and have just shared your paper with one of the group members who had asked if there were any papers on Australians abroad and the impact of social media! Hopefully that will draw them to the conference!!


    Here is the link to my paper, if you wish to explore how Social Media can play a role in bringing men together, enabling them to engage with and support one another, primarily with mental health.

  7. Hi Rebecca,
    Congratulations on your paper! I really enjoyed reading it and thought you did an excellent job of communicating it and keeping it so relevant. I was a member of “Aussies in London” while living in the UK, and I find it really helpful and your paper did a great job of outlining the characteristics of this virtual community.

    Reading your paper, it struck me that an interesting side note is how this Facebook groups organize meetings and social events in person and create real-world economic impact and benefits to businesses and how this reinforces the validity of this community. I wonder what your thought process was around placing your paper in this stream rather than the online diasporic?

    Again, I really enjoyed your interesting paper and congratulations on your work.
    If you are interested, my paper is live. It also focuses on online community building, and it focuses on forming the ‘virtual’ loungeroom’ by reality television audience on Twitter as a third pace.

    1. Hi Joseph,

      Thank you for taking the time to read my paper. Your feedback is greatly appreciated!

      That is amazing to hear you were a member of ‘Aussies in London’ – I am too! I moved to London in 2018 and lived there for about a year, before moving back to Australia. I still am a member of the group, as it allows me to maintain communication and the sense of community I had when I was there. Did you feel that being part of that virtual group significantly contributed to you feeling part of a community whilst living there?

      I chose the Communities and Online Social Media stream, as my own experience and research dictates that the majority of Australians living abroad, particularly in London, are more travellers than they are diasporic citizens, as many choose to move back to Australia eventually. As such, I chose to only explore the communities they form and join, bonding over their shared experience of living in a specific city, such as London.

      Thank you for sharing your paper – I am looking forward to reading your insights!


      1. Hey Rebecca,

        I think that the ‘Aussie in London’ online did foster a real sense of community. As you mentioned, the conversations, discussions and advice worked as a community discussion board. Beneficial community. I remember, catch up with this community on Australia day and again watching the State of Origin. People often talked at these events about discussions they had read in the online community.

        You did a great job focusing your paper within this stream. Even though we are both still members of this community, but I definitely am no longer an active member now that I have returned home.

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