This paper Is the culmination of the literature, research, project design, and evaluation completed to define a community, the effectiveness of community education, and who is identified as a community educator. Within the context of these assignments, variations of community and persons identified as community educators were discovered; but the commonality of the research and the projects was the idea of “community betterment”.
As quoted from the book. Linking Adults with Community: Promoting CIVIC Engagement through Community Based Learning, an Involved community Is not a given, passed down as part of our place and time; It is chosen. Active participation offers us a chance to create meaning for ourselves on the basis of our particular contributions to something larger than ourselves and our families” (Reed and Marianne, 2008, p. 90).
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This assignment is the summarization of the assignments completed for this course: the Literature Review, the Program Investigation, the Training Program Design, and the Evaluation of the Program In the Literature Review the questions “Who are community educators? , Design. Who are the providers of community education? What are the responsibilities of community educators? Guided the research assignment. It was initially determined that the definition of community could be liberally applied to various groups and cultures.
As stated in the Literature Review, Warren (1978) defined “community to be that combination of social units and systems that perform the major social functions having locality relevance. In other words, community means the organization of social activities to afford people dally local access to those broad areas of activity that are necessary in ay-to-day living” (p. 7). This definition of community assisted us in beefing community education. According to Smith (2011, p. 1 “a broad definition of community education is education for the community within the community. However as Smith (2011) reveals, “community isn’t just the place or context in which education occurs, fostering community is a central concern” (p. L) of community education. The significance of fostering a community atmosphere Is essential; and the process of developing community is significant when educating due to “the process of becoming part of an existing social network in order to encourage dialogue and 2011, p. ). Smith (2011) furthers examines community education and utilizes a definition by Cave (1990) and defines it as “a process designed to enrich the lives of Individuals and groups by engaging with people living within a geographical area, or sharing a common Interest, to develop voluntarily a range of learning, action, and reflection opportunities, determined by their personal, social, economic and political needs” (p. ). A significant point of the previous paragraph was the recognition that community education is designed, fostered, and implemented to enhance, enrich or resolve issues within the community by voluntary means or employment of the community members as a resource.
As stated in the Literature Review, according to Calibrating (Bibb “every individual Is a member of some kind of community and each, whether deliberately or unintentionally, further states community-based education is a “process whereby community members come to identify their problems and needs, seek solutions among themselves, mobile the necessary resources, and execute a plan of action or learning or both” (p. 3) In essence the community is often the initiator and developer of community education programs; henceforth leading to individuals citing as educators for their community.
So in summary, a community educator can become any individual, group, or organization within a community that identifies a need and sets about educating the community, and implementing a resolution to the need at hand. According to Calibrating (1995, p. 4), “this educative approach is one in which the community is seen as both agent and objective, education is the process, and leaders are the facilitators, inducing change for the better” in their community. So to conclude the Literature Review, the question posed was who are the providers of community education? He simple answer is the community.
However, a broader analysis of this question leads one to identify formal community organizations that organize, mobile, train and often employ citizens of the community to act for the betterment of their community. According to DRP. Calibrating (1995), “education is provided by schools, college, universities, and university extension and community education. It is also provided by non-school organizations such as private industry, professional organizations, trade unions, community organizations, churches, hospitals, and other community-based educational agencies. With such an expanse of community-based education programs to select for the Program Investigation, our group’s methodology for selecting the community -based programs was initially thru research and personal development to identify culturally enrichment programs. An additional aspect considered was identifying diverse cultural enrichment programs that educate and empower the community thru strengthening life-skills, encouraging self-development and self-fulfillment, and connecting to the community thru historical and creative connection.
Once the selected programs were identified for investigation, the methodology utilized to investigate the programs was interviews and research data provided by each agency. Our group utilized the questions from the course syllabus to conduct interviews with personnel from the Historic Homes Tour in Muncie, the Retreat program in Indianapolis, Winning Team Partners in Mesa, AZ. As stated in the Program Investigation, cultural enrichment programs are important to the communities they serve.
They can provide education, opportunities to socialize, support, comfort, a sense of place and history, etc. As our group investigated community programs, we realized the programs varied but the common themes were the commitments to educating the community in their specialty and providing cultural enrichment to the community. In the Program Investigation, Karri investigated the Monetarist Center which provides Historic Homes Tours; additionally, it hosts stained glass workshops and exhibits in an environment that gives a sense of history and community.
Carolyn investigated The Indianapolis Center Retreat program which provides Discipline Based Art Education in multiversity centers, churches, schools and housing cooperatives throughout the year. Additionally, art instruction for the student focuses n self-expression while also teaching art history and culture. Lastly, Michelle education to non-Christians about God’s love and application to everyday life. In one of Winners Team Partners program, the Orphanages program, the community educators help provide support, raise funds, educate the US donors about the situation and educate orphanages about God as well as the US (and our culture).
In the investigation of the programs, it was recorded that the main features of the programs were educating the community about historic people, fund raising, promoting cultural insight, strengthening life skills (such as self-confidence, immunization skills, and critical thinking), encouraging participants’ interaction with educators (through questions and small group sizes), teaching new and enriching concepts, create a sense of community, providing educators with heart and passion for the programs mission and an empowering and encouraging message for each participant.
Evidence of historic people was found in the Historic Homes tours and in the Christian Missions with God and other biblical references. Participants in each program took something home with them; whether it was a painting (Retreat) or a ewe concept such as the love God has for us (Christian Ministry), or new knowledge about the history of a city (Home Tour).
Each program empowered the community by providing information that participants took with them to share with others (Historic Homes – history and architecture about their community, Retreat – how to express emotion and grow creatively, and Christian Missions – how to give and receive love that can be shared for free). Many similarities existed between programs despite their individual context and content. They were successful due to being well organized, meeting the needs of the communities in which they served and most importantly, having educators that have heart and passion for what the programs purpose.
The educators were key in sharing knowledge and exchanging ideas; the programs were executed in a manner that supported the culture of the program and integrated well with the community they served. They gave participants opportunity for social participation in a culturally enriching environment. ; In the missions program, the educators are responsible for: organizing missions in foreign countries, missionaries and the messages or educational programs that will be taught overseas; avian spiritual strength and conviction; providing logistics, supplies, housing, ministry education and support, safety and organization of volunteers. In the Art Program the educators: offer high quality discipline based art education to children who cannot afford it or do not have access to art classes; lend their skills and talents to students while serving as caring role models; provide services for youth that ensure safety and support, and encourage learning. The educators of the Historic Home Tours are responsible for: teaching sessions; accommodating participants with capabilities; providing technical demonstrations (such as Power Point presentations); providing customer services (e. . Building relationships with people); creating new programs by being in touch with the audience’s needs/desires; planning, budgeting, and working as a team to accomplish their goals; and being approachable through interaction and feedback. The program investigation yielded some findings that aided in the designing of our training program. ; Needs Assessment: a good grasp of what the community needs and how to relate that in terms of a program to help educate that community is necessary. Community Interest and Input: the in” additionally to prevent overlap in services ; Resource Gathering: financial resources and volunteer resources within the community must be identified to begin the planning of the program. ; Program Design: initial phases of the program’s plan of operation must be generated for development and resource identification. ; Evaluation: examining the community-based program is essential, to determine if the purposed objectives are being achieved. Additionally, evaluation is key to the sustainability of the program. Sustainability: community buy-in is valued most ere due to the program continuing beyond its’ initial phases In addition to these findings, passion for the organization, community, or goal is necessary to effectively and actively engage in community resolution. Also technical skills which can be learned on the Job or through formal training maybe required. Research of the local climate and the ability to make connections within the community to support the overall goal of education.
As the Program Design was formulating, it was necessary to recall the research of the literature review and the program investigation. Each was instrumental in duding the design for the Coach for Life Program. From the literature review, we learned that a program must be designed with a vision or mission. As such the mission for the Coach for Life Program is to be a community-based education program organized with activities that develop for the purpose of attaining a specific benefit for the betterment of the community.
Additionally the Coaching for Life program (CFML) adapted ideas from program investigations conducted as community educational interviews to engage learners, educate and connect with the community. Retreat was one such program. Retreat uses art as a therapeutic tool, allowing underprivileged learners to express their creativity as well as emotions in a positive way, while giving back to the community. With the CFML program, we wanted to incorporate art and use it as therapy, expression, inspiration and empowerment.
Such was in the case of the Retreat program we found so effective. The Historic Homes program investigation showed us how art, design and local history worked together to educate the community. This programs historic home spoke as a symbol of a piece of history, inspiring art and connection to the community by serving as a physical “story’ of the Ball Brothers. From this investigation, we found the importance of art as a physical representation (in terms of the building) and also by the art created at the end of the tour.
We found it interesting how the design of the architecture and surroundings spoke of the local culture and history of the place, making it real, relevant and relatable. We wanted our program to have the lasting elements of this program. So, we designed the CALF program to use art projects for clients to make, take and share. Instead of a tour guide, we have ‘coaches’, guiding others through the design of their lives, moving award. The way an architect plans and designs for the buildings they create.
The Missions program investigation revealed that having a foundation grounded in faith and God, allowed cultural barriers to be broken, bringing communities together. Serving others and sharing the love of God (message of God), inspired us to design the CFML program to guide coaches by introducing prayer and faith into their lives; a place of abuse, to a place of peace both physically and emotionally, we found much value in including a faith based focus into our program. There is a cultural change hat occurs when victims make this move.
Whether it be a large, small local or overseas change, a transition period occurs and adjustments to the new culture (environment) take place and coaches will help domestic violence victims make adjustments for independent success. We believe that through a God foundation, as in the missions program, a foundation that lasts a lifetime is built. A common ground is formed. It shows coaches that through faith and prayer, they can begin to allow love, healing and trust to take place; therefore, leading to happy, healthy, loving relationships and independent lives.
The program designers will initially begin educating the life coaches with small groups meetings, twice a week for one hour. The frequency of the sessions will assist in the development of a sense of community; additionally, the small group meetings will allow for the life coaches to reflect upon the program and their coaches experience. Also provide support for the life coaches, considering the difficulties encountered when coaching domestic violence victims. Life coaches will utilize the small group meetings as a system of support to sustain their mental health.
The life coach training will consist of information and data specific to victims of domestic violence. Training information will consist of defining domestic abuse, assisting the client with navigating social service agencies, identifying dangers to client and family, assisting clients with identifying personal plan of protection, and educate the community about the effects of domestic violence. Once the initial training has occurred for 6 weeks, the training will move too once a week meeting for an additional 6 weeks.
At this point, life coaches will be immersed into coaching, mentoring, and educating program clients (concept of the genuine problem framework). Additionally, the responsibilities of being a community education representative will befall the life coaches. Though, the coaches may not be experts in all topic areas of coaching, they will need to have the ability to facilitate connecting the coaches with an expert in the area of development. Be it through the seminars, group work or one on one consult. The small group educational meetings with the life coaches will conclude at the 12 week point.
Weekly small group meeting will occur with life coaches and clients. Here reflection will be utilized to connect learning as well as build community. As life coaches mentor their clients, they will also educate the community via workshops, and advocacy. Once the initial 6 weeks of educational training concludes, coaches will shift to 1 weekly small group meeting and an online course with educational tools and books. Continuing educational trainings will occur monthly upon the conclusion of the 12 week training and quarterly workshops and conferences will be planned for the community and facilitated by the life coaches.
The life coaches will coach, mentor and educate program participants on the following areas: personal development, health, finances, culture change and career. For the personal development category, coaches will partner with programs such as Retreat to use visual art and inspiring messages including scripture to help guide people through their particular barriers. For the health category, coaches will utilize workshops to educate the client on the benefits of physical wellness; additionally, coaches will use money management workshops, will assist clients in developing a personal household budget, and assist in long-term finance planning.
Also, if clients have children ensure appropriate steps are taken to collect child-support. For the rarer/education category, coaches will partner with programs such as Dress for Success to educate participants on workplace etiquette and attire. In the Culture category, coaches guide coaches through times of culture change to gain stability. Coaches will ensure an educational plan is formulated for clients to progress toward independence and self-sufficiency. To determine the effectiveness of the program design, two community educators were consulted to Evaluate the Program Design.
These two educators were to answer the questions posed in the course syllabus which are What do they most like about your design and What do they think should e improved and how?. The Coach for Life program was presented to two community educators. One community educator is a licensed MS social worker, who offers group and family therapy for a non-for profit agency, Catholic Charities of Indianapolis. She has been a practicing therapist for over 15 years. The second community educator is a PhD student, Adult and Community Education.
Also she is an Assistant Professor at Tech Community College; Professional Speaker and Coach (Owner at Energize Life), Professional Trainer at Magellan Behavioral Health & MS. The breadth and depth of these educators experience within the community eave yielded a thorough evaluation of the program presented. First Community Educator Evaluation 1 . ) What do they most like about your design? I like the Historic Homes program. The more we know about our history – culture, art, design, and how we became who we are, the higher our sense of self- worth becomes and the more connected we feel.
I also like this program because it illustrates how one can plan various steps to building a new life the way an architect plans different phases of a building. This makes it clearer that one steps builds upon another, and with time and hard work, goals can be achieved. I like the Art Reach program. Art has been proven to be an effective therapeutic tool. Art can give a person a way to express feelings she may not have had the words to express. Art also is a vehicle to express feelings and situations that are too threatening to say out loud.
In addition, artistic expression gives a way to create and to show individuality, which in turn builds self-esteem. I like the Missions Program. Belief in and reliance upon God instills a sense that anything can be accomplished. Self-worth is sure to grow when one realizes that the Creator of the entire world loves and believes in you. I like the idea of fostering a community atmosphere in your program. As a member of an active community, your clients will feel a sense of support and affirmation. They will also benefit from greater shared knowledge and resources that can be found in the community.
A sense of belonging raises self-esteem and is one factor in combating the isolation that fosters abuse. I think it is important that part of the program design will include the production of products or services. As mentioned in your text, providing service builds confidence, self-esteem, conflict resolution skills and other life skills. I cacti role. Service shows people that they have talents and expertise to share with the world. 2. ) What do they think should be improved? Why? And how? This model appears to be well-researched and very well thought out.
I think it should be a highly effective program. If the program could be improved at all, I would suggest adding a parenting component for your clients. This parenting program should contain basic parenting education. It should also contain specific education for parenting the child who has been through or witnessed the trauma of domestic violence. Second Community Educator Evaluation ) What do you like most about the design? The overall concept of utilizing a holistic approach and providing life coaches as supportive assistance to those impacted by domestic violence.
The idea of training the coaches in specific areas to understand the stages of domestic violence; and how the person leaving the situation has to rebuild and grieve at the same time. The community programs being a part of the overall program and utilizing community resources within the coaching practice. The art idea is great once the trust level is in place as to how one’s life can be drawn. The faith development is a positive idea. ) What do you think should be improved? How? The six week program between the coach and coaches is relatively short, if the clients are Just emerging from the situation.
If they already have been through the crisis stage and are in stabilization stage, then I could see how six weeks could be effective. Eight weeks may be a better fit? Is six weeks necessary for the coaches to be trained? Seems long if they already have life coach skills and competencies. Develop further by tweaking definitions and explaining the six weeks component. Faith component – what about atheists and agnostics who are a part of the program s well as those who blame God? How will faith development be approached? Will this life coaching program be a faith-based program separated from secular-based programming?
In using the agencies, I’m not clear as to how faith based would work in partnering with these existing programs. Who would bring the program to the weekly meetings or is this outside of the weekly meetings? Does the coach “borrow” the teachings of the programs and implement on their own? How then is the community involved? And, who is making the referrals? I do not like the idea of an online instruction in conjunction with the weekly meeting. That is a lot to ask of someone in crisis and/or recovering. I think the weekly meeting would be the forum for the educational component.
Describe what would be in the online component to make me think it had value. Or at least I didn’t readily recognize the components. What if the coach did a coaching call between weekly sessions? If you were going to submit this for grant writing and funding, then you would want to write it in such a way that the fenders have multiple questions explained. If you are using the definition as your vision statement, then explain that. What is the vision of this program? What is the definition of holistic approach? Do not assume the reader understands the difficulties in working with domestic violence.
Clarify what they are? The community educators agreed with many of the program components that would components such as parenting and child therapy could be implemented to assist Coach for Life participants. Disagreement with the effectiveness of some components would have to be assessed after implementation of the program. In conclusion, this course and assignments broadened our understanding and knowledge of community. Students gained a broader understanding of a community educator; legalizing this title is applicable to anyone with a passion to immerse themselves in the development of their community.
Community education was essentially defined as community betterment; also this course recognized the significance of the community’s input and its effect upon sustainability. Participatory assignments such as the program investigation allowed students to identify and explore community educators within their own community, creating a realistic model for comparison to our readings. Lastly, creating a model of a community program was key to ensuring he knowledge of the course was solidified; making it applicable to our current and future positions.