Compiled by Lawrence H. Gerstein, Ph.D. & Anneliese Singh, Ph.D. As part of the Promotion of Nonviolence STG, there was a subgroup of graduate students that identified literature on the promotion of nonviolence that counseling psychologists across a variety of settings might find useful in their practice, research, and training.
Community Empowerment by Emily Mastroianni (Ball State University)
Counseling Psychology Literature
The counseling psychology articles on the topic of “community empowerment” include a wide range of perspectives on how to engage communities in multiculturally sensitive and creative ways. The literature reviewed included no empirical studies and was about half theory based and half case studies or review of specific programs. One article used qualitative methodology. Major themes included encouraging empowerment through group work, school counseling and consultation, and by using traditional or local healing approaches. The literature reflects the values of social justice and strengths based work that is valued in the counseling psychology field.
The strength of this area of research is the diversity of perspectives written on the topic of community empowerment. This literature utilized feminist, multicultural, social justice, and empowerment theories. The weakness of this area is that little empirical research has been used to test theoretical concepts and many of the case studies lack generalizability. Furthermore, a greater amount of literature was found outside the counseling psychology field and thus, counseling psychologists may benefit from learning from other disciplines such as social work, public health, sociology, social psychology and community psychology.
Bowen, N. H., Bahrich, A. S., & Enns, C. Z. (1991). A feminist response to empowerment. Journal of Counseling and Development, 69, 228
Response to McWhirter’s article, “Empowerment in Counseling” (same issue).
Cahill, M., & Martland, S. (1996). Community career counselling for rural transitions. Canadian Journal of Counselling, 30(3), 155-164.
Strategies adopted to address crises in rural communication often focus on the individual. An alternative approach is proposed whereby the community is viewed as the client. Community career counselling requires the commitment of community members to engage in exploring, analyzing, deciding and acting on options. The counsellor's role as team member and facilitator can bridge the gap between individual career counselling and economic development of the community. Goal-setting, career exploration, and action-planning become the process and the outcome measures.
1Note. The literature was obtained by Emily Mastroianni, Ashley Hutchison, John McConnell, Gunnar Orn Ingolfsson, Cameron Kiely Froude, Emily Barnum, Nehad Sandozi, and Meredith Berry.
Clare, M. M. (2009). Decolonizing consultation: Advocacy as the strategy, diversity as context. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 19, 8-25 DOI: 10.1080/10474410802494929
The following is a reflection on the clinical practice of consultation in the context of human diversity with particular attention to developing theories falling under the headings of decolonization and multicontextuality. Related to descriptions of these theoretical perspectives, I make reference to the small yet promising literature of advocacy consultation as one methodology that can support action toward realizing progress in the application of theory. My perspective is necessarily limited to my experiences and understandings as (among other things) an educated woman raised White in the southern United States by children of the Depression Era. Given this limitation and because our collective discussion in these areas is new, I offer introduction to the terms decolonization and multicontextuality as potentially useful to ongoing development of consultation responsive to diversity in schools and communities.
Cox, R.S. & Espinoza, A (2005). Career-community development: A framework for career counseling capacity building in rural communities. Journal of Employment Counseling, 42, 146-158.
The authors propose a framework for career counseling in rural communities that addresses the psychosocial and economic challenges of natural disasters and other catastrophic transitions. The career-community development framework expands the notion of "client" to include a community-as-client approach within a capacity building orientation to supporting workers in the wake of large-scale disruptions. Drawing on a case study of 2 communities recovering from a devastating forest fire, the authors outline an intervention approach that integrates elements from psychological-trauma theory, career-community capacity building models, and libratory educational practices. Implications of this framework for counselor training and practice are discussed.
Fries, E. (2003). Steps towards empowerment for community healing.Intervention: International Journal Of Mental Health, Psychosocial Work & Counselling In Areas Of Armed Conflict, 1(2), 40-46.
After surviving a recent massacre in the north of the Democratic Republic of Congo, a group of 22 staff members of a community health nursing programme requested the assistance of the author. During a three-day meeting, the traumatic experiences of the participants were discussed. Several steps, including performing a ritual ('burying the dead') and psycho-education on stress and trauma, were developed using the resources of the group. In view of the high numbers of traumatised communities, participants felt the need to pass on what they had learned. At a later stage, they began to view these issues in the context of community health work and prepared to change the mental health curriculum of their programme.
Hampton, M., & Norman, C. (1997). Community-building in a peer support center. Journal Of College Student Development, 38(4), 357-364.
For this qualitative study researchers investigated aspects of student development facilitated through focusing on community-building in a peer counseling team of 6 female and 3 male Caucasian Canadian college students (aged 21–43 yrs). The peer support team provided empathic listening, referrals, and support to university students. Interview results yielded material on the psychological sense of community and respect for diversity, the meaning associated with "peer", tools for community-building, and the values underlying empowerment. Through experiencing community with their peers, students reported enhanced ability and desire to create community within and outside of the university.
Hays, D. G., Arredondo, P., Gladding, S. T., & Toporek, R. L. (2010). Integrating social justice in group work: The next decade. Journal For Specialists In Group Work, 35(2), 177-206.
Group work can be an effective outlet for facilitating client empowerment at individual and systemic levels. This article outlines strategies for increasing attention to social justice issues in group work over the next decade within education, training, supervision, practice, and research. Drawing from historical perspectives, current literature, and experience as social justice-minded scholars, educators, and practitioners, the authors describe numerous and unique opportunities as well as potential challenges for group workers engaging in social justice advocacy and practice. Topics explored include consciousness raising, group empowerment,community organizing, definitions of social justice, attribution theory, and sociopolitical identity development.
Katz, R. (1984). Empowerment and synergy: Expanding the community's healing resources. Prevention In Human Services, 3(2-3), 201-226 doi:10.1300/J293v03n02_10
Suggests an alternative to the commonly held scarcity paradigm of thinking about valued human resources, which assumes individuals must compete because resources are scarce. The alternative—the synergy paradigm—is epitomized in the synergistic community, where valued human resources are renewable and expanding and are distributed equitably to members so that what is good for one is good for all, and the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Three field studies among the pKung of Botswana, Figi Islanders, and persons associated with urban community health centers in the US present cross-cultural evidence for the functioning of empowerment within a synergistic paradigm. Empowerment is considered as access to and control of valued resources; the specific valued resource focused upon is community healing. The studies suggest that community healing resources can become renewable and expanding, as can the process of empowerment that accesses them. Community members share these resources, combining conflicting resources into unexpectedly effective treatment packages. Given present inequities in resource distribution, transformative education is offered as one means to support a shift in thinking toward synergy.
Lee, C. C. (1991). Empowerment in counseling: A multicultural perspective. Journal of Counseling and Development, 69, 229-230
Reply to McWhirter’s article “Empowerment in Counseling” (same issue).
Li, C. & Vasquez-Nuttall (2009). School consultants as agents of social justice for multicultural children and families. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 19, 26-44 DOI: 10.1080/10474410802462769
This article discusses some of the social justice issues that multicultural students and families encounter that are directly relevant to school consultation practice. The issues include culturally fair education, fair expectations of the child from the family and school, fair assessment, evidence-based intervention, and evaluation of responsiveness to intervention for culturally/linguistically diverse (CLD) students. A case study is provided that illustrates how an ecological framework is useful in understanding the challenges multicultural children face and what consultants can do to promote social justice. Consultants are encouraged to (a) diligently increase their own multicultural competency; (b) actively consider the social, economic, environmental, political, and cultural contexts of consultation; (c) be mindful of school-specific social justice issues in consultation practice; (d) promote fair collaboration between the school and CLD families; and (e) advocate for just treatment for CLD children.
McWhirter, E. H. (1991). Empowerment in counseling. Journal of Counseling and Development, 69, 222-227.
This article examines the use of empowerment as a central component of counseling and as a criterion for evaluating counseling interventions. Definitions of empowerment across several perspectives are discussed and a definition of empowerment in the context of counseling is proposed. Based on this definition, potentially empowering and disempowering aspects of counseling are presented. Measurement and research issues and recommendations related to empowerment are highlighted.
Pearrow, M. M. & Pollack, S. (2009). Youth empowerment in oppressive systems: Opportunities for school consultants. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 19, 45-60 DOI: 10.1080/10474410802494911
Empowerment of youth, particularly in urban settings, is critical to addressing issues of social injustice. Programs that support the development of empowerment, or action taken by an individual to facilitate his or her own ability to act in the face of oppression, have demonstrated great promise in dimensions such as creating stronger group bonding and improved mental health and school performance (Bemak, 2005; Bemak, Chi-Ying, & Siroskey-Sabdo, 2005; Wallerstein, 2006). Yet, there are challenges inherent to implementing, supporting, and sustaining empowerment programs in many school settings given the hierarchical structure and contextual norms of these environments (Yowell & Gordon, 1996). This article reviews the Teen Empowerment program and offers strategies for consultants as they support programs and encourage socially just practices in the school setting. The use of Participatory Action Research methods, and its application to creating positive social change and the empowerment of community members, is also reviewed.
Poonwassie, A., & Charter, A. (2001). An aboriginal worldview of helping: Empowering approaches. Canadian Journal Of Counselling, 35(1), 63-73.
Euro-Canadian interventions have not successfully addressed the socio-economic problems experienced in Aboriginal communities as a result of years of colonization. Leading up to the new millennium, cultural forces have started to shift, and Euro-Canadian counsellors, therapists, and other helpers began to respond more effectively to the needs of Aboriginal peoples. A number of Aboriginal groups and communities took leadership by developing their own holistic approaches to healing/wellness, based on their worldviews. A reflection on this process with an awareness of Aboriginal worldviews and cultural imperatives offers possible approaches which facilitate empowerment in working with Aboriginal communities and Aboriginal clients.
Prilleltensky, I., & Prilleltensky, O. (2006). Promoting well-being: Linking personal, organizational, and community change. Hoboken, NJ US: John Wiley & Sons Inc.
From the back cover: Promoting Well-Being builds on the authors' knowledge base to connect treatment with prevention, counseling with advocacy, and personal change with community change and social justice. This resource is unique in showing how these areas can work in unison to enhance the well-being of individuals and the community alike. Addressing challenges such as disability, injustice, arrogance, and complacency, and using visual tools, including charts and diagrams, case studies, innovative exercises, and engaging prose, the authors provide readers with important insight into how these domains interact as well as strategies for helping clients harness the benefits of these interactions. Promoting Well-Being is an essential tool for psychologists, counselors, social workers, human service professionals, public health professionals, and students in these fields.
Roach, A. T. & Elliot, S. N. (2009). Consultation to support inclusive accountability and standards-based reform: Facilitating access, equity, and empowerment. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 19, 61-81 DOI: 10.1080/10474410802463320
Current federal legislation (i.e., No Child Left Behind (NCLB)) requires states to set rigorous academic standards, ensure classroom instruction addresses these standards, and measure and report students’ progress via large-scale assessments. NCLB assumes that inclusive accountability systems and standards-based reform will result in improved educational quality across states and school districts and increased access and opportunity for all students. In this article, we focus on three potential areas of influence for consultants committed to pursuing social justice in and through these policies: facilitating students’ access to the general curriculum; promoting equity in educational outcomes; and empowering educators and families to make appropriate decisions regarding participation in assessments. We also discuss challenges and lessons learned from providing systems-level consultation to support inclusive accountability and standards-based reform in numerous states. We conclude by offering ideas for future research and guidelines for providing consultation that facilitates social justice by creating improved opportunities and outcomes for all students.
Speight, S. L. & Vera, E. M. (2009). The challenge of social justice for school psychology. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation, 19, 82-92 doi: 10.1080/10474410802463338
This commentary suggests that a critical dialogue about the role of social justice within the practice of school psychology is needed for the field to embrace and advance a social justice agenda.
Toporek, R.L., Gerstein, L.H., Fouad, N.A., Roysircar-Sodowsky, G. & Israel, T. (Eds.). (2005). Handbook for Social Justice in Counseling Psychology: Leadership, Vision, and Action. CA: Sage Publications.
Wheatley, A., Christman, S. T., & Nicolas, G. (2012). Walking the talk: Reflections from a Community-Focused Dialogue Series. Journal for Social Action In Counseling & Psychology, 4(1), 1-17.
This paper provides a historical background and review of the literature on intergroup dialogues, with a focus on community-engaged dialogues. The authors illustrate the format, purpose, and community factors involved in the Day of Dialogue (DOD), an intergroup community dialogue series. An expansion of Zúñiga and Nagda's (2001) stages of intergroup dialogue is used to critically examine dialogue issues and provide a structure for culturally appropriate, community-engaged implementation. Lessons learned from three years of DOD implementation are provided, including the following themes: Balancing process and content, maintaining flexibility, defining roles, identifying biases, identifying/engaging key players, allowing voices to be heard, mindfulness toward environment/structure, and promoting movement towards action. Concrete suggestions to guide future practice around creating effective, culturally appropriate, and community-engaged dialogues, as well as effectively empowering communities and fostering social change will be discussed.
Non-Counseling Psychology Literature
The non-counseling psychology literature on “community empowerment” provided a wide array of articles across many disciplines including social work, sociology, community psychology, education, medicine, and school counseling. The articles were predominately theory based or overviews of programs. Popular themes included school or youth focused violence prevention programs, international projects, and community based programs aiming to end violence against women.
Counseling psychologists would benefit from doing more interdisciplinary work with these fields and could offer expertise on strengths based approaches, program evaluation, prevention, multiculturalism, and mental health issues. Overall, the topic of community empowerment is very broad and offers plenty of opportunities for counseling psychologists to work with other professionals to promote health, wellness, and violence prevention on a community level.
Anckermann, S., Dominguez, M., Soto, N., Kjaerulf, F., Berliner, P., & Naima Mikkelsen, E. (2005). Psycho-social support to large numbers of traumatized people in post-conflict societies: an approach to community development in Guatemala. Journal Of Community & Applied Social Psychology, 15(2), 136-152. doi:1O.1002/casp.814
The main challenge for community development efforts in post-conflict societies with large numbers of traumatized people is to create hope and reconciliation through community healing and participatory democratic community development. The community development efforts should aim at creating a set of values and practices conducive to peaceful co-existence through non-violent conflict resolution, thereby reducing the alarming levels of violence in post-conflict societies. This article describes a community development approach in Guatemala to supporting people affected by organized violence and torture. Through a description of the theoretical and practical work carried out in post-conflict Guatemala through the ODHAG-RCT programme, the article focuses on the relation between the three main pillars of the community development approach; healing, empowerment, and development. The community development approach uses health as the entry strategy to its aim of social and political transformation. Traditionally, health is not perceived as being linked with social and political transformation, but rather as the means to increase the health condition of community members. However, this article will show how community social psychology can be integrated in an understanding of political and economic community development. Hence it is argued that the outcome of the community development approach is measured through observations of the group as well as the political and economic developments of the community, and not only through a decrease in health related symptoms.
Breton, M. (1989). Liberation theology, group work, and the right of the poor and oppressed to participate in the life of the community. Social Work With Groups: A Journal Of Community And Clinical Practice, 12(3), 5-18. doi:10.1300/J009v12n03_02
Discusses liberation theology, a theology that has developed in Latin America by clergy and laity as a means for reaching the poor and oppressed people and for challenging the power of the Roman Catholic hierarchy. Four challenges that face such theologians are also discussed. Liberation theology offers ideas for social group workers in reaching out to the disenfranchised and challenges those elements in our theoretical models that lean toward paternalism and limited empowerment. Effective reaching out to the poor and oppressed involves a challenge to group social workers to give up some professional control and power and develop new practice models. Social work agencies would also need to give up some institutional control and power and accommodate to new models.
Conway, P., Cresswell, J., Harmon, D., Pospishil, C., Smith, K., Wages, J., & Weisz, L. (2010). Using Empowerment Evaluation to Facilitate the Development of Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Prevention Programs.Journal Of Family Social Work, 13(4), 343-361. doi:10.1080/10522158.2010.493736
This article addresses the question, “What factors contributed to successful completion of a needs and resource assessment in local communities, using the empowerment evaluation approach?” Case studies of three successful projects allow the exploration of organizational, community, state, and national factors that contributed to a strong needs and resource assessment, including original data collection, to guide the development of a plan to prevent intimate partner and sexual violence. The overall project was guided by empowerment evaluation principles. Each local community used additional conceptual frameworks, including grounded theory, Kolberg's theory of moral development, gender-role attitudes as operationalized by the rape myth acceptance and Olweis' systemic approach to bullying. Local programs focused on specific populations and collected original data through a variety of methods. For instance, one local agency utilized already existing surveys to assess bullying within their public school setting. Another community assessed the attitudes of male sex offenders and other male community members regarding gender-role attitudes, violence, and risk and protective factors for perpetration. A third community administered a random phone survey, examining attitudes toward rape, other violence against women, and gender roles. Each community integrated the results of their original data collection into their needs and resource assessment. Preliminary information regarding the communities' experience with the completion of needs and resource assessments, using the empowerment evaluation framework, indicate that successful projects used specific theories or frameworks to guide data collection. Positive collaboration with evaluators and community prevention coalitions characterized each community's experience.
Culbert, V. (2005). Civil Society Development Versus the Peace Dividend: International Aid in the Wanni. Disasters, 29(1), 38-57. doi:10.1111/j.0361-3666.2005.00273.x
Donors that provide aid to the Wanni region of Sri Lanka, which is controlled by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), are promoting initiatives that seek to advance the national peace process. Under the rubric of post-conflict reconstruction, the actions of political forces and structural factors have led to the prioritisation of two different approaches to peace-building: community capacity-building projects; and support for the `peace dividend'. Both of these approaches face challenges. Cooperation with civil society actors is extremely difficult due to intimidation by the LTTE political authority and the authoritarian nature of its control. Peace-building successes with respect to the peace dividend are difficult to measure, and must be balanced against the negative effects of misdirected funds. Aid organisations must be careful not to consider the tasks of peace-building, humanitarian relief and community empowerment as either interchangeable or as mutually reinforcing endeavours.
de Rivera, J., & Laird, J. (1988). Peace fair or warfare: Educating the community. Journal Of Social Issues, 44(2), 59-80. doi:10.1111/j.1540-4560.1988.tb02063.x
Examined ways of encouraging people to accept responsibility for influencing governmental foreign policy. An attempt to create an ideal educational experience—a peace fair—that would provide the set of conditions that earlier research by the 1st author (1984) suggested were essential for the acceptance of personal responsibility is described. Questionnaire data show that the fair was successful in convincing individuals that they personally could do something to help prevent nuclear war. However, it revealed a serious weakness in the current peace movement—an inability to portray convincingly a course of national action that could promote peace and justice.
Franzen, S., MORREL-SAMUELS, S., REISCHL, T. M., & ZIMMERMAN, M. A. (2009). Using Process Evaluation to Strengthen Intergenerational Partnerships in the Youth Empowerment Solutions Program. Journal Of Prevention & Intervention In The Community, 37(4), 289-301. doi:10.1080/10852350903196290
This study illustrates the utility of process evaluation methods for improving a new violence prevention program, Youth Empowerment Solutions for Peaceful Communities (YES). The YES program empowered young adolescents to plan and complete community improvement projects with neighborhood adult advocates. The process evaluation methods included questionnaires and focus groups with students and interviews with neighborhood advocates. Process evaluation results guided program improvements for the second year. The process evaluation results after the second program year suggested that the program improvements were associated with higher student ratings of program staff and neighborhood advocates. The students and neighborhood advocates reported increased positive experiences after the second program year, but continued to note the challenges of working inter-generationally on community.
Garnets, L. D., & D'Augelli, A. R. (1994). Empowering lesbian and gay communities: A call for collaboration with community psychology. American Journal Of Community Psychology, 22(4), 447-470. doi:10.1007/BF02506889
Discusses the history of empowerment efforts in lesbian and gay communities. Despite considerable progress, lesbians and gay men remain marginalized in American society. Their personal, family, and community development is hampered by social and institutional barriers to empowerment. Three disempowering problems of contemporary lesbian and gay communities are detailed: stresses related to coming out, heterosexism, and difficulties identifying with a community. Four domains are suggested for future collaboration between community psychologists and lesbian and gay communities: anti-lesbian/antigay prejudice, discrimination, and violence; mental health and health enhancement, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and civil rights. Future collaborations must build on successful social change strategies already used by activists in lesbian and gay communities
Goodman, R. M., & Noonan, R. K. (2009). Empowerment Evaluation for Violence Prevention Public Health Programs. Health Promotion Practice,1011S-18S. doi:10.1177/1524839908317646
The formative evaluation consultation and systems technique (FORECAST) approach to evaluating complex community programs is described as an empowerment evaluation strategy. First, empowerment evaluation is defined and contrasted with more-traditional approaches, such as experimental and quasi-experimental designs. Then FORECAST is described, illustrating how it was applied in four community projects. One of the projects is used to demonstrate the application of FORECAST evaluation in programs addressing the prevention of first-time male perpetration of sexual violence.
Goodrow, B., & Meyers, P. L. (2000). The Del Rio Project: A Case for Community–Campus Partnership. Education For Health: Change In Learning & Practice (Taylor & Francis Ltd), 13(2), 213-220.
Context: Interdisciplinary teams of graduate health professions students and faculty were provided with experiential learning opportunities while assisting a small rural community address critical health-related issues. Project objectives: To establish an effective partnership with community leaders and area residents to assist in determining the feasibility of a new primary care clinic and to remediate a water borne disease threat. To create interdisciplinary clinical learning experiences and to develop future longitudinal learning opportunities, emphasizing primary prevention. To create a community-campus partnership with control originating in and sustained by the community. Partnership development: An interdisciplinary team of health professions students and faculty worked with community leaders and residents to develop leadership skills, enhance infrastructure and coordinate efforts to address health concerns. A health marketing analysis and a series of year-long environmental assessments of surface and ground water were completed. The community was assisted with reaching consensus for future actions, emphasizing local control, enhanced county-based ownership, and sustainability of intervention efforts. Outcomes and implications: The Del Rio and East Tennessee State University partnership was instrumental in accomplishing its short-term objectives with the remediation of two major health issues. The more important long-term objectives of enhancing citizen leadership skills and developing a more action-oriented community infrastructure were also met. Using an experiential learning model, students practiced community organization skills, conflict resolution and problem-solving strategies. The campus-community partnership illustrated the advantages of experiential, multidisciplinary education and accentuated the positive aspects of collaborative planning and action. The partnership continues to provide expanded learning opportunities for students and contributes to the empowerment and self-sufficiency of the community. The ripple effects of the model have become evident, with dramatic increases in university-wide efforts to increase partnership opportunities and enhanced support for service learning throughout the region
Griffith, D. M., Allen, J., Zimmerman, M. A., Morrel-Samuels, S., Reischl, T. M., Cohen, S. E., & Campbell, K. A. (2008). Organizational empowerment in community mobilization to address youth violence. American Journal Of Preventive Medicine, 34(3, Suppl 1), S89-S99. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2007.12.015
Community mobilization efforts to address youth violence are often disconnected, uncoordinated, and lacking adequate resources. An organizational empowerment theory for community partnerships provides a useful framework for organizing and evaluating a coalition's community mobilization efforts and benefits for individual organizations, partnerships, and communities. Based on a qualitative analysis of steering committee interviews and other primary data, the results of a case study suggest that the intra organizational infrastructure; inter organizational membership practices and networking; and extra organizational research, training, and organizing activities facilitate the community mobilization efforts of the Youth Violence Prevention Center in Flint, Michigan. The organizational empowerment framework, and its focus on organizational structures and processes, illustrates the importance of recognizing and incorporating the organizational systems and structures that provide the foundation on which a community mobilization effort may build. This framework also highlights how organizational structures and processes are central components of multilevel strategies for organizing and mobilizing community efforts to address youth violence.
Guy, B. (2005). Between power and hegemony; business communities in peace processes. Review Of International Studies, 31(2), 325-348.
The support that businessmen and business organisations displayed for the peace processes in Israel and Northern Ireland was open and vocal, underscoring the supposed linkage between globalisation, peace and economic growth, and the supposed leadership role of business. The purpose of this study is to examine the motivations of the business communities in Israel and Northern Ireland in becoming involved in the peace processes, their organisation to promote peace, decision-making processes at critical junctures, and their actual impact on the political outcomes. Study of the business communities demonstrates that their empowerment enabled them to exert political influence but fell short of hegemony that would enable them to set the wider political agenda. The impact of both business communities, for different reasons, was therefore limited.
Harvey, M. R., Mondesir, A. V., & Aldrich, H. (2007). Fostering resilience in traumatized communities: A community empowerment model of intervention. Journal Of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 14(1-2), 265-285. doi:10.1300/J146v14n01_14
This paper describes the history, composition, and community intervention activities of the Community Crisis Response Team (CCRT) of the Victims of Violence Program and the community empowerment model of intervention that guides its work. The paper uses a single case study to illustrate the nature of community-wide trauma, the core attributes of ecologically informed and effective community intervention, and the intervention design, implementation, and evaluation processes that are embedded in the community empowerment model. The paper includes a description of the CCRT's approach to the conduct of traumatic stress debriefings and a discussion of the practical and theoretical implications of the CCRT.
Hernandez, T. (1999). Community Building in South Florida to Promote School Safety. Education & Urban Society, 31(3), 368.
Focuses on a study which examined the efforts of South Florida to address school safety in troublesome schools. Background of the study; Information on the Coalition for Community Empowerment initiative of the area; Details on juvenile delinquency in Broward County; How the target population was served; Results of the study; Expansion of the program to other districts.
Hipolito-Delgado, C. P., & Lee, C. C. (2007). Staying focused on what really matters: Further thoughts on empowerment theory for professional school counselors. Professional School Counseling, 10(4), 344-345.
Reply by the current authors to the comments made by C. Zalaquett and M. D'Andrea (see record 2007-07849-002), D. T. Sciarra and M. L. Whitson (see record 2007-07849-003), J. J. Schmidt (see record 2007-07849-004) and M. Mitcham-Smith (see record 2007-07849-005) on the original article (see record 2007-07849-001). In giving further thought to empowerment theory and in reviewing the critiques of the respondents, there are several issues that strike us as deserving additional consideration with respect to empowerment theory for professional school counselors. We would like to give further attention to the importance of the empowerment process for school counselors, the question of outcomes with respect to the empowerment process for students, and the operationalization of empowerment theory in schools. Addressing these issues should further assuage any concerns about the viability of empowerment theory as an appropriate theoretical orientation to guide social advocacy in school counseling. We hope that this intellectual exchange has been as thought provoking for the readers as it has for the authors. Additionally, we hope to have convinced the school counseling profession of the need for the empowerment of students from marginalized communities and, with the help of the respondents, to have provided a viable theoretical orientation with practical applications to facilitate this process.
Johnson, P. (2004). Black Radio Politically Defined: Communicating Community and Political Empowerment Through Stevie Wonder's KJLH-FM, 1992-2002. Political Communication, 21(3), 353-367. doi:10.1080/10584600490481460
KJLH-FM's community service activities demonstrate that the station's mission is more than talk; it is action. It acted upon residents' needs during the 1992 Los Angeles riots and has remained responsive to its audience. "Front Page," KJLH-FM's flagship program, served as an alternative voice in South Central Los Angeles and across the United States. KJLH-FM's response to the 1992 uprising was the reference point that the researcher used to identify themes and/or patterns defining the station's community role, especially as it affected civic participation and political mobilization. Beyond listeners' anxieties regarding the "violence" in the streets and their criticism directed toward the "Los Angeles Police Department," community empowerment and unity emerged among the top themes of the 1992 "Front Page" on-air transcripts. The KJLH-FM case, in particular, presents a rare opportunity to study the community responsiveness of Los Angeles' only independently Black-owned station within the context of a historical event as well as examine its relationship with other U.S. Black/urban radio stations. A significant factor that led to the station's grasp of community issues in 1992 was its location, or proximity to its listeners. KJLH-FM also has a uniquely prominent position in its community, given its ability to draw celebrities and politicians into major events and discussions.
Jones, J. L. (2005). Transboundary conservation: Development implications for communities in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. International Journal Of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, 12(3), 266-278.
Conservation is increasingly promoted as a sustainable development instrument in Southern Africa, particularly for remote rural communities. Conservation and development schemes are marketed as community-based projects providing local empowerment through the creation of jobs and cash stemming from protected areas, as well as increased biodiversity protection by local communities whose jobs are dependent on the resource. Transfrontier Conservation Areas (TFCAs), mega Peace Parks that cross international borders, are one of the latest conservation and development paradigms in Southern Africa. TFCAs have gained broad support, including government recognition as a development tool. However, there has been minimal research on the impact of TFCAs on local communities. This paper seeks to provide an empirical case study of a South African community bordering the Lubombo TFCA (South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique). Results are presented that indicate the Mhangweni community in KwaZulu-Natal could experience decreased access to social, natural, and economic resources as a result of the Peace Park.
Kosciulek, J. F. (1999). The consumer-directed theory of empowerment. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin, 42(3), 196-213.
Presents the Consumer-Directed Theory of Empowerment (CDTE) as a model for guiding the development and evaluation of disability policy and rehabilitation services. Consumer direction (CD) is a philosophy and orientation whereby informed consumers have control over the policies and practices directly affecting their lives. The major tenet of the CDTE is that increased CD in disability policy formulation and rehabilitation service delivery will lead to increased community integration, empowerment, and quality of life among people with disabilities. Applications of the CDTE include disability policymaking, service delivery and program evaluation, and rehabilitation research.
La Roche, M., & Tawa, J. (2011). Taking back our streets: A clinical model for empowering urban youths through participation in peace promotion.Peace And Conflict: Journal Of Peace Psychology, 17(1), 4-21. doi:10.1080/10781911003769165
A three-stage empowerment model is developed based on the experience of a psychotherapy group conducted with Black and Latino youth residents in an urban housing project with high rates of community violence. The model aims to not only ameliorate mental health symptoms related to exposure to community violence, but also enhance youths’ ability to transform their sociocultural context through peace promotion. The three stages are (a) addressing chief complaints and symptom reduction, (b) exploring narratives, and (c) fostering empowerment and peace through community action. Conceptual and clinical strategies are described within each stage, using case illustrations from the psychotherapy group.
Lee, A., Li, S. W., Au, B. Y., Yuen, W. K., Ho, M. M., Loong, M. C., & ... Ho, C. L. (2004). Parent Training: Experience of the New Territories West School Health Promotion Project of Hong Kong. Asia-Pacific Journal Of Public Health, 16(Suppl), S22-S26.
Parents' participation in school life is an important element of a health-promoting school. To maximize the potential of parents as partners in health education and take on a leading role in promoting health in the school, family and community, a parental health education programme using the empowerment model had been launched in partnership between academic and health sectors. A total of 28 parents selected from eight schools in the New Territories West region of Hong Kong participated in the programme. Evaluation of the programme revealed that the programme had matched well with the expectation of most participants. All respondents had reported an increase in health awareness and knowledge, and confidence to promote health concepts in familiar environments, such as the home and school. They also showed interest to participate in further training in health related issues. Parental health education is recommended to enhance active involvement for building a greater sense of belonging and to put through individual empowerment to community empowerment. Parental involvement in school health promotion would be an effective way to facilitate the paradigm shift.
Lee, J. B. (1999). Crossing bridges: Groupwork in Guyana. Groupwork: An Interdisciplinary Journal For Working With Groups, 11(1), 6-23.
This article explores the theory and process utilised in practising groupwork in a country different from the worker's country of origin. It is about constructing conceptual bridges to cross cultural and racial divides. The author was invited to act as resource person and consultant to the Guyanese social work community on the empowerment of women through groups in Guyana, South America. A record of a group meeting with indigenous community leaders who wanted to help abused women in their midst is included to demonstrate the integration of theory into practice. Working with people in groups is a valued modality in this rapidly changing country whose greatest resource is its people.
Martin, I. (2001). CONSTRUCTING A COMMUNITY RESPONSE TO VIOLENCE. Smith College Studies In Social Work, 71(2), 347-355.
After the massacre at Columbine High School, community members across the country convened to discuss how better to understand the warning signs, how to intervene at the right time—how to protect our children. What role do institutions of higher education have during such times of community crisis? What is the role of a school of social work? This paper is a case study of action taken by one school for social work toward developing a community response to violence through interdisciplinary outreach and the empowerment of local community members.
Mills, R. C., & Naim, A. (2007). Toward a peaceable paradigm: Seeking Innate wellness in communities and impacts on urban violence and crime.National Civic Review, 96(4), 45-55. doi:10.1002/ncr.194
The article discusses the peaceable empowerment paradigm and its difference from traditional approaches to community change in the United States. It explores the development of community empowerment and leadership programs in the country's urban areas which aim to reduce crime and violence. Impacts of traditional activist modalities on communities are also examined.
Mok, B. (2004). Self-help Group Participation and Empowerment in Hong Kong. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, 31(3), 153-168.
This paper reports on the first comprehensive study of self-help groups in Hong Kong. Initial findings from the quantitative and qualitative data suggest that self-help group participation has an impact on intrapersonal, interpersonal and community/political empowerment. Based on existing data, this study has resulted in the development of a hypothetical model encompassing the interrelationships among self-help group participation, social support, social learning, leadership and empowerment, for testing in future research.
Moyo, C., Francis, J., & Ndlovu, P. (2012). Community-Perceived State of Women Empowerment in Some Rural Areas of Limpopo Province, South Africa. Gender & Behaviour, 10(1), 4418-4432.
Active involvement of grassroots community members in finding sustainable solutions to women empowerment is crucial. However, it is necessary to build a common understanding, among local interest groups, of the current state of women empowerment first. This study investigated the perceived state of women empowerment in some rural areas of Makhado Municipality in South Africa. A total of 5 924 people comprising children, youth, women, men and local leaders voluntarily participated in the study. Data were collected from 41 villages in three Wards through reflection circles in which questionnaires requiring responses on a Likert-type scale were administered. Although the state of women empowerment in terms of access to resources, awareness creation, participation and control was appreciable, considerable challenges still existed. The results of this study underscored the need for mounting capacity enhancement interventions to address the challenges confronting women empowerment in rural areas.
Novek, E. M. (1999). Communication and Community Empowerment.Peace Review, 11(1), 61.
Examines the communication strategies used in community building in the United States. Development of activity programs for the youth; Information on the training conducted by the Coastal City Capability Corps (CCCC); Background information on the CCCC.
Prater, J. S. (1987). Training Christian lay counselors in techniques of prevention and outreach. Journal Of Psychology And Christianity, 6(2), 30-34.
Proposes a training program for lay counselors that embraces the assessment of environmental stressors in emotional disorders, techniques of community outreach and empowerment, cultural awareness and sensitivity, the use of existing church-based support systems, the development of new support systems within the church, and integration with other church outreach ministries.
Reinelt, C. (1994). Fostering empowerment, building community: The challenge for state-funded feminist organizations. Human Relations, 47(6), 685-705. doi:10.1177/001872679404700606
Using a case study methodology (the Texas Council on Family Violence), this paper explores specific ways in which the battered women's movement in Texas was affected by state funding. It is argued that state funding of this organization was a mixed blessing. It allowed movement activists to stabilize the funding of their organization and to have a wider political and social impact. At the same time, state funding expanded the organizational field based on available resources, not common ideology. This expansion had the potential to threaten the ideological and political cohesion of the movement. The effects of state funding were mitigated when the movement's leadership engaged in feminist practices that challenged the bureaucratic and hierarchical practices of the state's decision making structures by empowering movement participants to work together collectively toward common goals.
Shalhoub-Kevorkian, N., & Erez, E. (2002). Integrating a victim voice in community policing: A feminist critique. International Review Of Victimology, 9(2), 113-135.
The article addresses the role of victim's voice in community policing of violence against women. Using Israel as a case study, with its minority Arab and majority Jewish communities, the authors show the paradoxes of adhering to community policing tenets in a highly collectivist community, and when divergence and conflict rather than congruence and consensus characterize the relations between the police, the minority community and its victims. The article juxtaposes and contrasts two databases relevant for understanding the role of victims in community policing in violence against women. Police officers' views about and perceptions of Arab female victims and their community are presented alongside the narratives of Arab female victims about their abuse, and their interaction with and perceptions of the police. The article concludes with discussing the risks and highlighting the advantages of community policing for violence against women victims in terms of victims' safety and empowerment, and the potential of community policing for improving the relation between minority communities and police.
Spergel, I. A., & Grossman, S. F. (1997). The Little Village Project: A Community Approach to the Gang Problem. Social Work, 42(5), 456-472.
The article focuses on inter-organizational and community approach represents by the Little Village Gang Violence Reduction Project in Chicago. Community organization and direct services are not easily combined in the modern lexicon of social work methods. The current rhetoric distinguishing community and personal empowerment from various treatment modalities, however defined, may be insufficient for planning and dealing with the complex problems of troubled and troublesome people in fragmented, impoverished and segregated communities. Youth gang crime and delinquency are major social problems that are no longer confined to inner city areas. Both are now present in small as well as medium-size cities, suburban areas and rural areas.
Stevens, G., Seedat, M., Swart, T. M., & van der Walt, C. (2003). Promoting Methodological Pluralism, Theoretical Diversity and Interdisciplinarity Through a Multi-Leveled Violence Prevention Initiative in South Africa. Journal Of Prevention & Intervention In The Community,25(1), 11-29. doi:10.1300/J005v25n01_02
Violence prevention within low-income, under-resourced communities presents significant challenges to community development researcher-practitioners seeking to maximize partnerships, resource utilization and overall program effectiveness. This article highlights a South African research and service delivery organization's efforts to develop a violence prevention matrix, premised upon an adaptation of the public health approach and the infusion of a critical, community development praxis. It presents preliminary outcomes of a multi-level pilot application of this matrix in a low-income neighborhood in South Africa, specifically focusing on evaluating its capacity to foster methodological pluralism, theoretical diversity and interdisciplinarity, together with promoting community empowerment and coalition-building strategies.
Rees, S., & Pease, B. (2007). Domestic Violence in Refugee Families in Australia: Rethinking Settlement Policy and Practice. Journal Of Immigrant & Refugee Studies, 5(2), 1-19. doi:10.1300/J500v05n02_01
It has been identified that immigrant and refugee women are particularly at risk in cases of domestic violence. This article reveals the qualitative research findings from a study into the significance of traumatic history, social and economic context, cultural differences and changed gender identities on the perceptions and experiences of domestic violence in refugee families. The study was undertaken with a sample of refugee men and women from Iraq, Ethiopia, Sudan, Serbia, Bosnia and Croatia. Compounding contextual factors concerning structurally based inequalities, culturally emerged challenges, social dissonance, psychological stress and patriarchal foundations are revealed. Informed by an intersectional framework that recognizes gender oppression as modified by intersections with other forms of inequality, the article argues the case for community-managed projects involving multi-level empowerment-based interventions to prevent domestic violence
Rule, A. C. & Kyle, P. B. (2009). Community-building in a diverse setting. Early Childhood Education Journal, 36, 291-295 doi: 10.1007/s10643-008-0290-z
Research demonstrates that community-building in schools is an integral aspect of student success. Based on a foundation of research findings related to the importance of implementing community-building into all aspects of a school, community-building activities, including five specific classroom strategies (parent visits class to tell about child, weekly newsletter with interactive activities, bi-monthly open-house hour where children explain school work to parents, Valentine letters filled with true compliments, and a cultural celebration unit focused on Africa), were implemented in an urban magnet school. This school was moving toward racial integration as well as implementation of a Montessori education program. As predicted from research information, incorporating community- building strategies geared at creating a welcoming climate, at improving faculty interaction, at fostering collaborative classrooms, and towards on-going and open teacher/parent communication and collaboration resulted in positive outcomes in what could have otherwise been a difficult, negative or unproductive situation.
Venning, P. (2010). Marrying Contested Approaches: Empowerment and the Imposition of International Principles: Domestic Violence Case Resolution in Indonesia. Journal Of Development Studies, 46(3), 397-416. doi:10.1080/00220380903002913
Resolution of domestic violence disputes in Indonesia illustrates the contradictions between two international development trends - the increasing recognition of women's rights as human rights, and the emergence of empowerment approaches to community development. Despite the focus of legal empowerment programmes on increasing women's autonomy and finding creative solutions to legal problems, there is increasing pressure on women victims of violence to use the state criminal justice system to resolve domestic violence justified by international human rights principles. This pressure impedes empowerment programmes and fails to appreciate the capacity of local communities to apply and adapt international principles to their local context.
Zimmerman, M. A., Stewart, S. E., Morrel-Samuels, S., Franzen, S., & Reischl, T. M. (2011). Youth Empowerment Solutions for Peaceful Communities: Combining Theory and Practice in a Community-Level Violence Prevention Curriculum. Health Promotion Practice, 12(3), 425-439. doi:10.1177/1524839909357316
This article describes the development and evaluation of an after-school curriculum designed to prepare adolescents to prevent violence through community change. This curriculum, part of the Youth Empowerment Solutions for Peaceful Communities (YES) program, is guided by empowerment and ecological theories within a positive youth development context. YES is designed to enhance the capacity of adolescents and adults to work together to plan and implement community change projects. The youth curriculum is organized around six themed units: (a) Youth as Leaders, (b) Learning about Our Community, (c) Improving Our Community, (d) Building Intergenerational Partnerships, (e) Planning for Change, and (f) Action and Reflection. The curriculum was developed through an iterative process. Initially, program staff members documented their activities with youth. These outlines were formalized as curriculum sessions. Each session was reviewed by the program and research staff and revised based on underlying theory and practical application. The curriculum process evaluation includes staff and youth feedback. This theoretically based, field-tested curriculum is designed to be easily adapted and implemented in a diverse range of communities.