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Welfare Reform on the Web (August 2007): Community Regeneration and Development - Overseas

Collaborating with community-based organizations through consultation and technical assistance

P. Motes and P. Hess (editors)

Chichester: Columbia, 2007

Community groups and human service organizations are under a tremendous amount of pressure to strengthen their programmes and measure the effectiveness of their work. These challenges have prompted many to seek consultation and technical assistance in order to better plan, develop, and evaluate their services and resources and be more responsive to the needs of funding bodies and the community. This book presents methods and strategies for assisting and collaborating with groups and agencies serving families. Helping a community or organization involves many tasks (reaching out to the community, building leadership, developing and planning for action) and requires specialized knowledge and skills. The book combines a research-based, theoretical framework with practical guidance to explain this process and offers cross-cultural case studies in a wide range of settings. The book begins with a discussion of the role of the coach or capacity-building consultant and the related but distinct activities of consultation, technical assistance, and service. The value of empowerment theory, adult learning theory, and change theory, among other theories, are outlined. Special emphasis is placed on the importance of cultural competence - the ability to balance diverse needs, ethical mandates, and dilemmas is crucial. The book concludes with a detailed, step-by-step guide for helping an agency or programme perform a self-evaluation.

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