Eddie Bowman, JMF's Community Development Worker works with groups funded by JMF to create local networks of expertise and support that is essential to community work. Eddie supports groups to work more effectively with other organisations and help their communities (geographical/interest) to become more engaged with the forces that affect them. If you would like to contact Eddie please call 0151 707 6077 or e-mail
WHAT IS COMMUNITY WORK / DEVELOPMENT?
Running services for the local community is a key tool of community work, but it is only community development, if it contributes to social change.
- is rooted in the real interests and struggles of ordinary people;
- is critical of the status quo;
- is committed to progressive social change.
A Community Organisation/Worker has three key roles:
- TO SEE: to identify the multiple community issues that will become the generative themes (issues of most interest to their community);
- TO ANALYSE: to ask problem-posing questions and to reflect on the root causes & manifestations of the issues;
- TO ACT: to act with the community to change the situation.
We don’t expect our applicants to be great in all these areas, but, if you get a grant, we can offer the support of our Community Groups Development Worker, who can help you develop your work.
HOW CAN YOU MEASURE THE SUCCESS OF YOUR COMMUNITY WORK?
- Have people gained more confidence?
- Are they making their own demands of your organisation and of the authorities?
- Are they better equipped to get things done?
- Are the media, the authorities and other communities more aware of the issues in your community?
- Have new leaders (new ‘experts’) in your community been identified for their potential skills and authentic opinions?
- Have professionals/officials learned new responses to their patients/ clients/tenants/pupils, etc.?
- Do people feel more in control of their own community?
- Do people feel valued by your organisation and a sense of solidarity in your community?
If you get a grant from us, our Grant Support Worker can help you think of ways of measuring your success.
“Go with the people:
Live with them.
Learn from them.
Start with what they know.
Build with what they have.
But of the best leaders
When the job is done, the task accomplished,
The people will all say,
‘We have done this ourselves.’’’
-Lao Tsu, China 700 B.C.