Community Development Principles | City of Casey
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18 September 2017

Community Development Principles

Version 1.4

Definitions

Council

means Casey City Council, being a body corporate constituted as a municipal Council under the Local Government Act 1989

Councillors

means the individuals holding the office of a member of Casey City Council

Community

a community is a group of two or more people who are connected in a self-defined way by a common interest and/or a geographic location and/or identity.

This acknowledges that the wider Casey community comprises many and varied communities

Community development

community development is a process for enhancing the wellbeing of all residents in the City of Casey now and in the future.

Scope 

These principles have been developed for use by Council (Councillors, staff and volunteers) to provide guidance to its approach in working with Casey’s communities. They also provide leadership in community development practice to the wider community as a public policy of Council.

Context

The development of a community is more than the bricks and mortar or physical infrastructure of a community. Emphasis should also be placed upon identifying and blending the values, needs and aspirations of residents, community members, Council, businesses and other appropriate stakeholders for the benefit of all involved.

Council is committed to the community development process through the implementation of a set of Community Development Principles and recognition of community development in Council plans and strategies and does so by:

  • Providing opportunities for residents to meaningfully participate in decision making processes that affect their community.
  • Supporting individuals and communities through the provision of resources and fostering of partnerships between individuals and within communities.
  • Assisting with the development of strong and resilient communities that have the ability to identify and meet the communities’ needs, achieve self-reliance,contribute to solutions and support their own advocacy efforts.

Policy

The following principles will be reflected in the practices of Council.

Inclusiveness – Provide the wider community with opportunities to meaningfully participate in information gathering, planning, direction setting and decision making regarding outcomes that affect the communities’ development. An ultimate goal is that communities would drive this process.

Collaboration – Establish and foster partnerships that aim to achieve positive outcomes for all residents. Council aims to assist communities in finding solutions to issues that are important to the lives of individuals, families and communities. This includes developing networks between people, encouraging different communities to work together and building relationships with and between those different communities.

Capacity building – Support and strengthen individuals, families and communities to identify needs and develop solutions at a local level. This may involve advocacy, empowering people in action, education, awareness raising and distribution of resources to individuals and communities.

Equity – Ensure that opportunities and resources available to the community are distributed in a just and equitable manner according to community needs and in some cases, set criteria. In addition, all communities should have the right to access all Council services and resources without discrimination.

Responsiveness – Ensure the evolving nature and constancy of change within the community are responded to efficiently and effectively in line with community development methodologies and practices. This will enable the identified needs of the community to be met in a relevant and timely manner.

Administrative updates

It is recognised that, from time to time, circumstances may change leading to the need for minor administrative changes to this document. Where an update does not materially alter this document, such a change may be made administratively. Examples include a change to the name of a Council department, a change to the name of a Federal or State Government department, and a minor update to legislation which does not have a material impact. However, any change or update which materially alters this document must be by resolution of Council.

Review

The next review of this document is scheduled for completion by 30 October 2021.