Taghmon Action Group has a vital role to play in community development in the Parish of Taghmon.
Our aims are to:
- Work towards minimising social exclusion and disadvantage in our community.
- Improve our services to the community, such as fostering integrated and sustainable rural development.
- Maximise access to training and employment for those marginalised by their circumstances.
- Develop social capital through training and development.
- Stimulate the local economy by providing services to small enterprises, particularly those whose owners come from a disadvantaged background.
Community development is a developmental activity composed of both a task and a process. The task is the achievement of social change linked to equality and social justice, and the process is the application of the principles of participation, empowerment and collective decision making in a structured and coordinated way.
The core concerns of community work are:
- Redistribution – to sustain the drive to eliminate poverty and social exclusion
- Recognition – a recognition and a value for diversity and the full participation of minorities to ensure an equal and accessible society
The following community work principles are key:
- Collective action – Community work is based on working with and supporting groups of people. It enables them to develop knowledge, skills and confidence so that they can develop an analysis, identify priority needs and issues and address these through collective action.
- Empowerment – Community work is about the empowerment of individuals and communities, and addressing the unequal distribution of power. It is about working with people to enable them to become critical, creative, liberated and active participant in taking more control of the direction of their lives.
- Social Justice – The active pursuit of social justice is an essential element of community work and makes an important contribution towards a socially cohesive society. Community work is based on a belief that every person and every community can play an active role in creating conditions for a just and equal society where human rights are promoted and all forms of oppression and discrimination are challenged.
- Equality & Anti-Discrimination – In working for equality, community workers must work from the starting point that while people are not the same, they are all of equal worth and importance and are, therefore, equally worthy of respect and acknowledgement. Community workers have a responsibility to challenge the oppression and exclusion of individuals and groups by institutions and society that leads to discrimination against people based on ability, age, culture, culture, gender, marital status, socioeconomic status, nationality, skin colour, racial or ethnic group, sexual orientation, political or religious beliefs.
- Participation – Participation is about the involvement of groups who experience social exclusion, marginalisation and discrimination in decision making, planning and action at all levels, from the local to the global. Participation can be viewed as a continuum of activity that can start from information sharing through capacity building and empowerment to active engagement and meaningful participation in democratic processes.
- Involves and enables people to work together to influence, change and exert control over the social, political and economic issues that affect their lives.
- Is about a collective focus rather than a response to individual crisis.
- Challenges inequitable power relationships within society and promotes the redistribution of wealth and resources in a more just and equitable fashion.
- Is based on participative processes and structures which include and empower marginalised and excluded groups within society.
- Is based on solidarity with the interests of those experiencing social exclusion.
- Is understood as including both geographic communities and communities of interest.
- Presents alternative ways of working, seeks to be dynamic, innovative and creative in approach.
- Challenges the nature of the relationship between the users and providers of services.
- Involves strategies which confront prejudice and discrimination on the basis of gender, ethnicity, class, religion, socioeconomic status, age, sexuality, skin colour or disability