Safety-Net Groups: an approach to community development

Francis, Abraham P., and Zuchowski, Ines (2014) Safety-Net Groups: an approach to community development. In: Goel, Kalpana, Pulla, Venkat, and Francis, Abraham P., (eds.) Community Work: theories, experiences and challenges. Niruta Publications, Bangalore, India, pp. 86-102.

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Community development is an important strategy to achieve change and develop communities. It can be a vehicle for community members to take charge of the development of their community by working together collectively. This chapter explores how the formation of Safety-Net Groups in communities can become the means and outcome of community development in rural communities. The process of formation of such groups facilitates the development of social cohesion, community belonging and social capital. The groups themselves provide a safety-net to people who are experiencing social isolation and deprivation.

This paper is based on both field practice and teaching community development subjects at an Australian university. Practice observations and reflections suggest that people affiliate and associate with various groups based on their need and interest. In this paper we examine purposeful formation of Safety-Net Groups as a strategy for community development where people can attain a sense of belonging, and feel protected and safe. We explore Safety-Net Groups (SNGs) in relation to self-help groups, highlighting the potential of SNGs to take on a social action focus. This paper illustrates how SNGs can be developed, fostered and sustained and emphasises SNGs as a valuable and user-friendly tool for community development.

Item ID: 30974
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-81-923326-7-3
Keywords: community work; community development; safety-net groups; group work; strengths
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2014 05:57
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160799 Social Work not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940107 Comparative Structure and Development of Community Services @ 100%
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