A new article:
Facilitating Social Change: Seven Questions that Keep Us Awake
By Doug Reeler, the Community Development Resource Association, 2014
Download the paper here
Social change does not begin with the ability to find right answers but to continually develop more powerful questions, out of experience, and from there to move forward. Often there are no answers, only continual questioning into the future.
This writing shares seven questions and lines of inquiry that guide our work:
Presented at the AFD-F3E Seminar: The contribution of Monitoring and Evaluation to Social Change. November 5, 2014, Paris – see http://f3e.asso.fr/publications-afd-f3e and http://goo.gl/ipMQGd
The District 6 Community Development Initiative
This new programme seeks to mobilise the uniquely diverse and culturally rich working class community of the District 6 enclave, in the Cape Town inner-city below the highway, that escaped the Group Areas Act removals in the 1970s. Gentrification of the area is threatening a new kind of removal through economic means. Working with local government and business they will renew and revitalise their community life and explore and expand their livelihood and economic possibilities. The programme will develop a multi-stakeholder approach, held within a strong participatory action research process, to surface and strengthen the resourcefulness of the community and support the imagining and implementation of a different future.
Civil Society and the future work of social change
by James Taylor of the CDRA
Many civil society organisations in the funded business of social change have been overtaken by the very thing they have been pursuing. Changes in the context around social development organisations are demanding that they reflect deeply on what they do, how they do it, and on the very identity of what they should become if they are to remain relevant to the demands of the time.
The changing context in broad brush strokes
The history of funded (or aided) development is most often traced back just over 60 years to the ‘European Recovery Programme’ initiated by the United States in 1948 after World War II. The intention was to build relationships through helping to rebuild European economies after the end of the war in order to prevent the spread of Soviet communism. As the European countries started recovering they too incorporated development aid into their relationships with countries considered to be less developed. Development aid played a significant role in shaping political and economic relationships throughout the cold war period. Around two decades ago, a series of events began to dramatically change the world order. The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 coincided with the return to democracy in Chile after Pinochet’s dictatorship. The demise of the Soviet Union led to democratic movements and regimes in central Asia, Eastern and Central Europe. Around the world, epochal changes were taking place; the end of apartheid in South Africa and its new democratic president Nelson Mandela in 1994; the democratic regime in Cambodia in 1993; economic liberalisation in India in 1991; and the Tiananmen Square demonstrations in China in 1989. Three trends seemed to coalesce simultaneously around the world nearly two decades ago – the rise of democracy, the globalisation of economy and the voice of civil society. There was a resurgence of the concept and meaning of civil society in this period. In its new incarnation, civil society began to be heard, seen, talked and written about around the world.
Download the rest of this article here
Striving for wholeness – an account of the
development of a sovereign approach to evaluation
by Sue Soal, March 2012
This case study offers an approach to evaluation that serves to support and strengthen social change organisations and initiatives. It is also a case study and account of the development of a practice, and a practitioner, showing the path this approach took in its development through experience. And then that path is illustrated by several smaller case-stories that give insight into particular emphases and practices supported by the approach. In so doing it attempts to offer both theoretical and practical insight into what practicing evaluation out of a ‘sovereign’ approach might involve.
Download CDRA's Annual Report
The Annual Report, for 2013/2014, gives an account of our strategic alliances, donor partners and programme collaborators, of the actions we implemented,
achievements, lessons learned and challenges we continue to face.
Two new courses