Communities have knowledge and expertise that are essential to developing sustainable and contextual solutions to the problems that a community faces. Solutions created by external parties such as NGOs or government developmental projects often overlook the complexities of a community and might even further contribute to the problem that it aimed to fix or create unexpected and unwanted effects.

The following paper (P.13) is a case study from the Asset-Based Development: Success Stories from Egyptian Communities developed by the Center for Development Services in Cairo, Egypt and the COADY International Institute. The case study shows how the Bani Ghani community developed community-based tools and approaches with the assistance of external parties and how these solutions were relevant to the community.

In your e-Portfolio, answer the following

  • After having begun to think of a problem that you want to approach in your community, and after positioning yourself with respect to the community, can you think of ways to ensure the community’s role in designing the solutions?
  • How would you communicate with your community?
  • Who would you involve? And how?