Community Participation in Development Projects (5 days)

Enabling communities to participate effectively in development work

Course overview

Click here to download the course leaflet (PDF format).

Participatory development is the most important approach towards enabling communities to help themselves and sustain efforts in development work. Communities are no longer seen as recipients of development programmes; rather, they have become critical stakeholders that have an important role to play in the management of programmes and projects in their areas. This training is the first step towards building their capacities to effectively participate in identifying and responding to community issues and problems in development projects. Community stakeholders are community-based mechanisms that can help support and sustain a programme or project. For example, in implementing education projects, the mechanism can be the school governing council or the parents, teachers and community association.

This 5-day skills building and application training aims to build a framework to assess, develop and monitor the capacity of communities in development programmes and projects. Participants learn to formulate an appropriate training curriculum that best responds to the needs of the community stakeholders, their mandate and responsibilities.

The course starts with reflection and discussion on the role of different stakeholders in development work, the meaning and characteristics of capacity building for communities and how capacity building of communities helps in ensuring programme/project success and sustainability. The course then focuses on how to identify and map different community groups relevant to the programme/project, how to assess their needs and expectations and how to develop an appropriate training needs instrument. Based on training needs assessments, working groups of participants develop training curriculums. At the end of the course, working groups present the results of their training outcomes, which are then discussed among all participants and consolidated. A summary of good practices and lessons learned concludes this course.

Who should attend

The course will benefit all persons who participate in project and training management including:

  • Training and Organisational Development Managers
  • Programme/Project Development Managers
  • Team Leaders of a project
  • NGO Staff, Community Leaders and Officers involved in designing and implementing institution building programs

Note: Participants should have prior experience in community development and engagement. To profit most from this course, participants should ideally bring examples of existing community issues related to their programmes or projects.

How you and your organisation will benefit – Learning Objectives

On this course participants will be able to:

  • Develop an community participation framework which will be the basis for the identification and development of capacity building interventions for communities
  • Design and present a community participation assessment instrument as a tool for identifying and monitoring stakeholder growth
  • Develop a training curriculum that is adapted to the needs of the community and to the programme/project.

Course programme

Day 1 Capacity Building and Community Stakeholder Mapping

  • What is the purpose of capacity building for community stakeholders
  • Who are the community stakeholders relevant for the project
  • Defining capacity building for community stakeholders as programme/project partners
  • Identifying and mapping community stakeholders relevant for the project
  • Identifying stakeholders’ needs and expectations
Day 2 Developing a Community Participation Framework

  • What is the purpose of a community participation framework
  • Defining the components of such a framework
  • Describing and defining stakeholder competences as programme/project partners
  • Describing gaps in knowledge and skills
  • Identifying effective capacity building interventions
Day 3 Creating an Instrument to Assess Community Participation

  • How to assess stakeholder capacity and gaps for the successful implementation of projects
  • Formulating the questions for the assessment
  • Using focus group discussion as a methodology for assessments
  • Conducting the assessment
  • Analysing the results of the assessment
Day 4 Designing Training Programmes to Close the Gap

  • Overview of curriculum development
  • Defining objectives of training programme based on the stakeholder participation assessment
  • Three phases towards a comprehensive training programme
  • Writing course descriptions for different stakeholder groups
Day 5 Sharing Proposed Community Training ProgrammesParticipants present the results of their working group discussions on:

  • Community participation frameworks
  • Assessment instruments
  • Training curriculum

Presentations are followed by discussions.

Interested in having this course conducted tailor-made for your organisation? Please contact us.