Resource for Building Strong Communities

The Scotish Community Development Centre (SCDC) has developed this tool based on the resource
Assessing Community Strengths by Skinner, S. and Wilson (2002) with a cross-section of practitioners, managers and community organisations who contributed their experience, views and ideas.
What do we mean by a ‘strong’ community? What do we mean by an ’empowered’ community? A community  that is organised to take action to bring about change that is of benefit to those that live there.
This resource is a tool, which supports a strategic approach to community capacity building, recognising that many different agencies are involved in providing the support community groups need to develop and thrive.
In particular:
 provides a frame of reference for all stages of planning, implementing and reviewing community capacity building work across
multiple agencies;
 sets out a process whereby community organisations and representatives have a say in how they are supported;
 identifies the potential characteristics of a strong, organised, community;
 helps support agencies to take a more joined up approach in providing support thereby minimising duplication of effort, and facilitating greater understanding of each agency’s role and contribution to supporting communities;
 sets out a series of stages and steps that provides a systematic and robust assessment of community strengths and gaps in support provision;
 takes a research based approach, ensuring support is provided based on the priority needs and issues identified by community organisations;
 facilitates learning about how communities are organised and supports dialogue between agencies and communities; and
 is consistent with current thinking and policies around community involvement, engagement and empowerment.
The application of this tool will be particularly beneficial to: communities or neighbourhoods that are subject to significant development or redevelopment; those where there is limited or problematic engagement with public bodies; those where there is little community energy or activity; and/or those with tensions between different groups.
Download the complete resource from here