Starting from people’s strengths and assets in community development – rather than focusing on perceived weaknesses – fosters new possibilities on all levels. We were approached by New Start Magazine to talk about the idea in their Liverpool survey, where we talked about Liverpool’s Big Local project.
Appreciating People got involved when our co-director Tim Slack began working there in 2011, introducing them to Appreciative Inquiry in 2012. He worked closely with Lianne McGinnes and other workers and residents, using AI to build up community conversations and to design their vision, as Clubmoor continued to build on strengths in a number of different ways. Lianne was one of our appreciative journaling pioneers and, with Appreciating People, has run a number of appreciative journaling workshops for volunteers in Liverpool. Appreciative journaling has played a key part in her person-centred approach to helping individuals to identify and build on their strengths.
As we became part of a wider European network, Lianne and another colleague from Clubmoor, alongside community members from Anfield, became a key part of our Grundtvig programme. Appreciating People and international partners worked together on Sharing strengths, developing communities – promoting strength-based learning across societies for the future. You can see some of the work we did here.
All of this work fits into asset-based community-driven development (ABCD) – also called asset-based community development, which is described in this blog.