Campbell, D, Wunungmurra, P & Nyomba, H 2007, ‘Starting where the people are: Lessons on community development from a remote Aboriginal Australian setting’, Community Development Journal, vol. 42, no. 2, April, pp. 151–166.
After completing this reading please answer provide a short written response for each of the questions below.
(a) How is community development understood by the authors?
(b) Identify and briefly describe two of Ife’s eight dimensions of development evident in the case study.
(c) What strengths and/or limitations of the community development are evident in the case study?
(d) What does the case study tell you about community development?
a. The authors of the case study explain community development in different ways. Labonte says that community development in the aspect of health is used to organise and support the people of a community to understand the issues that they have with their health. It motivates the people to be self-reliant and make their own decisions based on their activities. There are other authors who state that the involvement of the local people in developing health strategies which are sustainable would help to determine better health outcomes. Additionally, several other authors state that community development is a very useful strategy which can be used to address the Aboriginal issues of health.
b. The two dimensions of community development among the eight dimensions proposed by Ife are social development and personal development. These two dimensions are both interlinked in many ways. This is because social development occurs when people of the community understand the issues of each other and make decisions so that they are able to solve the issue. In the case study, it has been said the people of the community would be able to provide a better solution regarding the different health issues that are being suffered by the other people. Therefore, it provides a large scope for community development since the communication and relation between the people of the community as well as their decision making power increases (Campbell, D., Wunungmurra and Nyomba 2007). On the other hand. It also makes the individuals self-reliant and forms their own decisions regarding the knowledge that they incur from the people of the community. Community development helps the people to gain control of their lives and this helps to improve the Aboriginal health. This is personal development since the people of the community are able to develop themselves with the help of knowledge and develop their decision making skills as well which helps them to improve on their health issues. The involvement of the Aboriginal people of a community in the health issues of one another will help them to counteract any health problems in the future.
c. There are both advantages to community development as well as limitations that have been described in the case study. The advantages of community development are that it helps the people to be self-reliant and make their own decisions through different facilities that have been provided by the government. With the support of the government, the Aboriginal people would be able to address their own health issues and also the issues of the other people in their community. It helps to create empowerment among the local people and they would be able to take control over their demands and problems. However, despite these advantages, there are also limitations to community development (Campbell, D., Wunungmurra and Nyomba 2007). Community development also causes harm to the Aboriginal people when it is being used as a form of oppression, racism, domination, colonialism and to impose the values and traditions of the western culture on the Aboriginal community. In such cases, Aboriginal people are the victims of community development since it causes more harm to them than good. They have to continue suffering the effects of dispossession and colonization. They are often disempowered and suffer from several health issues from which they find no relief. Furthermore, the Aboriginal communities in the remote areas suffer more due to their isolation from the decisions and services of the centralized government.
d. This case study states the different way that community development can help the people along with the practices and disadvantages that is existent in community development. Community development has the potential to improve upon the health problems and empower the people of the community. The different departments of the government and the staff should share the responsibility and the power to make decisions. They should not shift the problems to the disadvantaged groups without having the proper solutions through which they can overcome their problems. Moreover, the government should train their staff so that they are able to support the decisions relating to community development. The non-aboriginal staff should understand the complex procedures that are required to work in an unusual setting in the remote areas of Australia (Campbell, D., Wunungmurra and Nyomba 2007). Additionally, the government should fund the disadvantaged groups and provide resources to implement solutions in the community so that the groups are able to develop themselves in the process of community development. Community development would encourage the people and support them both technically and financially so that the people are able to develop themselves. Finally, the government would have to continually implement the process so that the value of the development is made on the people. The case study helps to determine the potential of the community development among the Aboriginal people so that they are able to address their own problems and are capable enough to make the right decisions with the proper support from the government.
Campbell, D., Wunungmurra, P. and Nyomba, H., 2007. Starting where the people are: Lessons on community development from a remote Aboriginal Australian setting. Community Development Journal, 42(2), pp.151-166.
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