Select Committee on Public Administration Minutes of Evidence


Community Involvement Strategies

Table 8


ThemeIssues Strategy
Baseline informationEnsuring full range of information is available
  • Disaggregate information by race and gender
  • Ensure full range of community organisations covered
  • Consult with all sections of community
  • Use innovatory techniques involving diversity of organisations and residents
  • Vision and strategyFrom the margins to the mainstream?
  • National policy to make race and gender mandatory strategic objectives
  • Accept diversity of routes to regeneration
  • Diversity as an opportunity not a problem
  • Build on positive examples in current strategies
  • PartnershipsSilent partners

    Barriers to inclusion

    Hurdles of resource bidding process
  • Equal opportunities "badging" for partnerships
  • DETR/GORs to query bids lacking "balance"
  • Support resources and mentoring for voluntary organisations to put in bids
  • ImplementationInclusivity as process not just concept—implementation key targeting—universal or specific? Consultation and involvement
  • Inclusive consultation more time for preparing bids
  • Community development
  • Race and gender "experts"
  • Determine best mix of universal and specific targets
  • Share good practice
  • Regional and local infrastructureSpatial variation in addressing issues of diversity

    Role of GORs

    Building strategic alliances and networks
  • Capacity building for partnerships, GORs and voluntary organisations
  • Local networking at many levels to share experience
  • Accept universal aims appropriate in some areas, specific ones elsewhere
  • Monitoring, evaluation and researchReviewing a silence

    Not mechanical exercise

    —part of inclusive process

    Appropriateness of indicators
  • Government and research institute funding to ensure framework for evaluation includes race and gender
  • Case studies of good practice written up
  • Monitoring to include gender and recognise diversity in ethnic groups
  • Processes and outcomes not outputs
  • Use range of techniques: participatory, qualitative
  •   From Brownill S and Darke J "Rich Mit."

    Getting Started
      Map local organisations
      Understand local priorities and skills
      Build confidence through early project work
      Develop a vision and action plans with local communities

    Involving communities in partnerships
      Create partnership structures that work for local communities
      Make resources available for community groups
      Arrange training for both community activists and professionals
      Help community groups with administrative and financial procedures

    Creating strong local organisations with their own assets
      Develop a partnership "forward strategy", including a strong role for community groups
      Consider possible models for successor organisations including: development trusts; neighbourhood management organisations; LETS; and credit unions

    Developing an infrastructure to build and sustain community organisations
      Accept that community organisations need long-term support
      Contribute to the better co-ordination of training and support services
      Take steps to secure pre-bid resources for community groups

    Monitoring progress
      Establish a framework for evaluating both concrete outputs and key processes in community involvement
      Ensure appropriate monitoring of progress both by the partnership and by Government Offices for the Regions (Regional Development Agencies after April 1999)

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