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Chapter 12

Community Chapter 12.docx

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Colleen Loomis

Chapter Twelve: Community and Social Change Why Social Change? - Change is intertwined - Communities have a basic right to self-determination  Seems to be a societal value  Community psychology takes on the notion that communities have a right to self- determination - Applying science to social change  Interested in greater good and social justice; there will always be competing forces for resources *Science gains vale through application; community psychology is an alternative paradigm to original psychology Tools for Change: - Encourage citizens to consciously examine and direct change processes  Change agency - Deliberate change efforts are needed  Target - Do both tools together to create change; first followed by the second PICO: Cycle of Organizing Cycle Of Organizing - National network of religiously based organization - Combine building strong interpersonal and community relationships with assertive group tactics to influence community leaders and institutions - Interest in working in low-income neighborhoods; want to mobilize individuals to engage in change - Provides training on identifying and addressing change—cycle of organizing (ARAR) 1. Assessment: Meet one-to-one with citizens to define community issues and develop working partnership—Builds interdependence and mutual support 2. Research: organization members meet to identify the most pressing community issue discussed during conversations with citizens—key goal is identifying contradictions between policies, business and community services 3. Action/Mobilization: Organization members meet, decide on an action plan and target an person or office to discuss community change with—key goal is to present the reality of the community problem and actions that citizens demand to resolve it 4. Reflection: returns to one-on-one relationships to evaluate outcomes and lessons learned Spanning Community Networks: - Strengthening cohesion within community organization builds integrative power Seven Approaches to Community and Social Change: 1. Community Coalitions - Brings together a broad representation of citizens within a locality, to address a community problem - Covers multiple Sectors and they all come together within one geographical region to address a certain issue - Often focused on organization level - Usually agree on a mission, write action plans and build legitimacy, seek funding than implement programs - Coalitions have become an effective means for strengthening citizen participation and catalyzing community change - Bring organizations together for coordinated action, create preventive programs and engage the resources of nongovernmental community institutions (i.e., religious congregations and civic or business groups) - Process takes up a lot of time, not good if you need to get something done quickly *WATCH VIDEO ON SLIDES 2. Consciousness Raising - Involves increasing citizens’ critical awareness of social conditions and energizing their involvement in challenging and changing those conditions - Consciousness raising distinctively emphasizes personal and social transformations - Ex. Moane’s study of the Irish women’s liberation movement—participants in women’s group were able to create new understandings of personal, interpersonal and political pathways to change  Led to critical awareness of power in relationships and action at different levels of one’s life - Community readiness: how much a locality recognizes a problem and takes steps to address or prevent it - Nine stages of community readiness 1) No awareness of the problem 2) Denial that it is a local problem, even if a problem elsewhere 3) Vague awareness of the problem but without local efforts to address it 4) Preplanning and local information gather about the problem 5) Preparing strategies for community change, led by a local team 6) Initiating programs or policy changes to address the problems 7) Establishing changes within local organizations such as schools, with local resources 8) Maintaining strong program support, evaluation and excellence - Moving through the stages requires leadership, resources and commitment - Model used to develop culturally valid health interventions *WATCH VIDEOS FROM SLIDES 3. Social Action - Groups use this to offset the power of organized money with the power of organized people - Identifies obstacles to empowerment and creates constructive conflict to remove them - Involves power and conflict - Based on  Need and resource assessments by citizens  Identifying weaknesses in the power structures - Social action tends to be:  Grassroots action  Visible action in social arena  Overt expression of power and protest. - Textbook example: African-Americans only got hired in very menial positions at a department store. African-American community groups planned a “shop-in” where they would all go into the department store, overcrowd it decreasing space for customers, order things for delivery and than later refuse delivery. This act would cause large expenses for the store and upon hearing about this plan they decided to change their hiring practices before the “shop-in” could happen  The goal was clear and tangible  Generates more participation considering it asked citizens to do something they are familiar with—shopping - Effective social action requires bringing out numbers of committed, organized citizens to oppose powerful interests - Main idea is to overtly express power and protest 4. Community Development - Strengthening community relationships and aims to build up community resources - Broadens opportunity for citizen participation and influence in decision making - Does not rely on conflict instead it brings together the resources of multiple groups in a locality (i.e., neighborhood organization, religious congregation, businesses, etc.) - Uses collective action to promote: Four Domains  Economic development—e.g., of businesses and jobs  Political development—of community organizations to influence decisions  Improving social environment—e.g., health, education, policing, etc.  Improving physical environment—e.g., housing, transportation, parks, etc. - Few efforts promote at the same time - Good examples are those involved with economic development - Economic development may lead to improving social and physical environments *WATCH VIDEO ON SLIDES 5. Organizational Consultation - Professionals work as consultants to make changes in an organization’s policies, structure or practices (expert give information to an organization) - To be considered a social change intervention, the work needs to involve organization’s role in broader community/society.  I.e., not just improving worker productivity - If an organization’s capacity to engage in social change is
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