I'm struggling to say 'local community' in one word. Is there a suitable word which describes 'local community' or synonym?
Will neighborhood work well?
a district, especially one forming a community within a town or city. [Google]
How about microcosm ?
a community, place, or situation regarded as encapsulating in miniature the characteristic qualities or features of something much larger. "Berlin is a microcosm of Germany, in unity as in division"
Maybe you can use populace. According to Collins:
noun (sometimes functioning as plural)
1) the inhabitants of an area