Community OrganisationSubmitted to:Ms Princy T Sebastian,School of Social Work,Marian College, Kuttikkanam.Submitted by:Bimal Antony,1stMSW,School of Social Work,Marian College, Kuttikkanam.Date of Submission:18thNovember 2010.
IntroductionCommunity is a very necessary part in the development of human beings. It helps in thesocial, psychological and intellectual growth of human beings. Size and type of community can vary.There will be a common behaviour pattern for all the community members. There are various typesof communities among each societies and nations.Community organisation is the process of organising community for the development of itsmembers. Community organisation can be also said as an institution or as the organisation of peoplejoined together for a common cause, directed by the feeling of together for development and isgoverned by an elected body of governance by themselves.CommunityCommunity can be said as a group of people who form relationships over time by interactingregularly on some common beliefs, principles, life styles and experiences, which are of interest to allof them for varying individual reasons.Knowledge in history is a necessary factor in the development of knowledge aboutcommunities and its structure. In the development of the humans from the animal tom social it isthrough the development of the communities and societies the humans attained this growth. Theorigin of community can be traced back to the times when humans started to live together in groups.These small groups later expanded to larger communities and to societies which later acted as thefoundation stones in the development of cultures and civilisations.Community organisationCommunity organization is that process by which the people...organize themselves to takecharge of their situation and thus develop a sense of being a community together. It is a particularlyeffective tool for the poor and powerless as they determine for themselves the actions they will taketo deal with the essential forces that are destroying their community and consequently causing themto be powerless.-Reverend Robert Linthicum, World Vision InternationalCommunity organization covers a series of activities at the community level aimed atbringing about desired improvement in the social well being of individuals, groups andneighbourhoods. Community organizing is about creating a democratic instrument to bring aboutsustained social change.Community organizations (sometimes known as community-based organizations) are civilsociety non-profits that operate within a single local community. They are essentially a subset of thewider group of nonprofits. Like other nonprofits they are often run on a voluntary basis and are selffunding. Within community organizations there are many variations in terms of size and
organizational structure. Some are formally incorporated, with a written constitution and a board ofdirectors (also known as a committee), while others are much smaller and are more informal. Therecent evolution of community organizations, especially in developing countries, has strengthenedthe view that these "bottom-up" organizations are more effective addressing local needs than largercharitable organizations.The early attempts in community organization were an outcome of the serious problems i.e.problems of unemployment, poverty etc. faced by the communities. Thus grew up manyorganisations and social agencies to provide support to the community. Soon, it was realized that allthese efforts need to be co-ordinated and streamlined so as to avoid duplicity of work and to reducethe gap in the delivery of services to the community.Community Organisation is one of the primary methods of social work. It deals withintervention in the communities to solve the community problems. As a method of social workcommunity organisation can solve the problems of many people in the community through theircollective involvement. Community organisation and community development are inter-related astwo sides of same coin. The community organisation includes other methods of social work, that is,group work, and casework. The power structure plays a role in community organisation. The socialworkers need to know the community power structure to practice community organisation method,which is used for empowering people for their developmentThe fundamental aspect of the community organizations is the principle of "Co-operativespirit" which promotes the people to unite together to address a common issue. Communityorganization recognizes the spirit of democratic values and principles and community organization isabout is creating democratic involvement.Organizing is about empowering. When people unite together, barring all discriminations andget involved in the community organizations, they develop confidence. This empowerment comeswhen people learn skills to help themselves and others. The collective action helps in communitybuilding.The community organization recognizes the power of individual. It believes, through thecollective strength of the people, better teamwork and adopting scientific methods can makecomprehensive social problems.Another Philosophy is that of coordination. It is concerned with the adjustments and inter-relations of the forces in the community life for a common welfare.Modern CO rests on a solid bed of key principles around which most knowledgeablepractitioners and observers are in general agreement. The degree of adherence to these principles,and the relative emphasis placed on one principle or another, provides the best means to distinguishCO groups and efforts from each other. These same principles also help to distinguish CO fromother types of strategies for neighborhood and community change and social betterment.
According to Borgos and Douglas, the key principles of contemporary CO are:A Participative Culture. CO organizations view participation as an end in itself. Under therubric of leadership development, they devote considerable time and resources to enlargingthe skills, knowledge and responsibilities of their members. "Never do for others what theycan do for themselves" is known as the iron rule of organizing.Inclusiveness. As a matter of principle, CO groups are generally committed to developingmembership and leadership from a broad spectrum of the community, with many expresslydedicated to fostering participation among groups that have been "absent from the table,"including communities of color, low-income constituencies, immigrants, sexual minoritiesand youthBreadth of Mission and Vision. In principle, every issue that affects the welfare of thecommunity is within COs purview, where other civic institutions tend to get stuck on certainfunctions while losing sight of the communitys larger problems.Critical Perspective. CO organizations seek to change policies and institutions that are notworking. In many communities, they are the only force promoting institutional accountabilityand responsiveness. Sometimes community organizations take critical positions and becauseof that they can be viewed as partisan or even polarizing in some contexts, and an obstacle tosocial collaboration. However, research suggests that effective governance depends on"civicness" - not consensus. A critical stance may generate conflict, but it can also stimulateparticipation and sharpen political discourse in ways that lead to deeper forms of socialcollaboration.Typical community organizations fall into the following categories: community-service andaction, health, educational, personal growth and improvement, social welfare and self-help for thedisadvantaged. In Canada and elsewhere, amateur sports clubs, school groups, church groups, youthgroups and community support groups are all typical examples of community organizations. Indeveloping countries (like those in Sub-Saharan Africa) community organizations often focus oncommunity strengthening, including HIV/AIDS awareness, health clinics, orphan children supportand economic issues.Community organizingCommunity organizing is a process where people who live in proximity to each other cometogether into an organization that acts in their shared self-interest. Unlike those who promote more-consensual "community building," community organizers generally assume that social changenecessarily involves conflict and social struggle in order to generate collective power for thepowerless. A core goal of community organizing is to generate durable power for an organizationrepresenting the community, allowing it to influence key decision-makers on a range of issues overtime. In the ideal, for example, this can get community organizing groups a place at the table beforeimportant decisions are made. Community organizers work with and develop new local leaders,facilitating coalitions and assisting in the development of campaigns.
While community organizing groups often engage in protest actions designed to forcepowerful groups to respond to their demands, protest is only one aspect of the activity of organizinggroups. To the extent that groups actions generate a sense in the larger community that they have"power," they are often able to engage with and influence powerful groups through dialogue, backedup by a history of successful protest-based campaigns. Similar to the way unions gain recognition asthe representatives of workers for a particular business, community organizing groups can gainrecognition as key representatives of particular communities. In this way, representatives ofcommunity organizing groups are often able to bring key government officials or corporate leadersto the table without engaging in "actions" because of their reputation. As Alinsky said, "the first ruleof power tactics" is that "power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have." Thedevelopment of durable "power" and influence is a key aim of community organizing.Community developmentCommunity development is a structured intervention that gives communities greater controlover the conditions that affect their lives. This does not solve all the problems faced by a localcommunity, but it does build up confidence to tackle such problems as effectively as any local actioncan. Community development works at the level of local groups and organisations rather than withindividuals or families. The range of local groups and organisations representing communities atlocal level constitutes the community sector.Community development is a skilled process and part of its approach is the belief thatcommunities cannot be helped unless they themselves agree to this process. Communitydevelopment has to look both ways: not only at how the community is working at the grass roots, butalso at how responsive key institutions are to the needs of local communities.Community development works on the following policies.Community Development is crucially concerned with the issues of powerlessness anddisadvantages as such it should involve all members of society, and offers a practice that ispart of a process of social change.Community Development is about the active involvement of people in the issues whichaffect their lives. it is a process based on the sharing of power, skills, knowledge andexperience.Community Development takes place both in neighbourhoods and within communities ofinterest, as people identify what is relevant to them.The Community Development process is collective, but the experience of the processenhances the integrity, skills, knowledge and experience, as well as equality of power, foreach individual who is involved.Community Development seeks to enable individuals and communities to grow and changeaccording to their own needs and priorities, and at their own pace, provided this does not
oppress other groups and communities, or damage the environment.Where Community Development takes place, there are certain principles central to it. Thefirst priority of the Community Development process is the empowering and enabling ofthose who are traditionally deprived of power and control over their common affairs. Itclaims as important the ability of people to act together to influence the social, economic,political and environmental issues which affect them. Community Development aims toencourage sharing, and to create structures which give genuine participation andinvolvement.Community Development is about developing the power, skills, knowledge and experienceof people as individuals and in groups, thus enabling them to undertake initiatives of theirown to combat social, economic, political and environmental problems, and enabling them tofully participate in a truly democratic process.Community Development must take the a lead in confronting the attitudes of individuals andthe practices of institutions and society as a whole which discriminates unfairly against blackpeople, women, people with disabilities and different abilities, religious groups, elderlypeople, lesbians and gay men, and other groups who are disadvantaged by society. It alsomust take a lead in countering the destruction of the natural environment on which we alldepend. Community Development is well placed to involve people equally on these issueswhich affect all of us.Community Development should seek to develop structures which enable the activeinvolvement of people from disadvantaged groups, and in particular people from Black andMinority Ethnic groups.Community organization and community developmentThere is a common philosophical base between community organization and communitydevelopment. Both aims to enable people to live happily and fully developed life. Both have basicfaith in the common man and his right to self-determination in the framework of the society. Bothgive emphasis to self-help and help the people to help themselves to solve their own problems.However, community organization and community development should not be considered assynonymous.CD is concerned with the promotion of all aspects of life including social, economical andcultural; both in rural and urban areas. While CO is concerned with adjustment of social welfareneeds and resources in cities, states, Nations as well as in villages.CO is practiced in the USA on a voluntary basis. While CD in almost all the developingcountries are a government-sponsored program.CO is a product of urbanization and industrialization. Here the main concern is problems ofthe population mobility, problems of the family, problems of the aged, problems of the juvenile
delinquency, of unemployment and provision of social security. But CD is concerned with how toinduce people to meet their basic human needs.CO tends to be more process oriented while CD as practiced in India tends to be targetoriented.ConclusionCommunity is the very essential part in the development of human society and life. There arevarious types of communities in the society and sometimes with the community itself. Communityorganizing and community development are two sides of the coin. Both are very necessary in thefield of Social Work. A social workers role must be all times that of a facilitator and he or she mustfollow the principles associated with a professional social worker in both as a community organizerand community developer.