Community Development Training



When: June 11 – 13, 2014
Where: Fort Collins, Colorado
Format: Face-to-Face

Course Description

What turns a group of individuals into an organization or social movement.  This course will explore the structural, social, and  psychological barriers inhibit or prevent individuals and groups from getting involved and working together for change.  Examine the definition of community mobilization as both an initial and ongoing process central to any community and social change effort that seeks to build support and participation of individuals, groups, and institutions to work towards a common goal or vision. Learn from the theories and methods of Brazilian educator Paulo Freire, whose work has guided some of the most successful development and education programs around the globe, including the Orangi Pilot Project in Pakistan, The NAAM movement in Burkina Faso, and the Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement in Sri Lanka, among others.

This course will explore the process of mobilizing communities from within the framework of Grassroots Support Organizations (GSOs).

“A subset of NGOs has decided to move beyond social service provision and invest in initiatives that build the human and financial resources of impoverished communities. Focusing on diverse issues—from health and the environment to political mobilization and microenterprises—these NGOs share a common approach to the communities with which they work: They foster the long-term empowerment of impoverished populations by assisting them in decision making and the mobilization of resources and political power. This core approach is what defines these development NGOs as grassroots support organizations.”

— Boglio Martinez, Rafael A. 2008. “Grassroots Support Organizations and Transformative Practices” in Journal of Community Practice, Vol. 16(3).

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the the basic philosophy and basic principles of community mobilization and grassroots support organizing.
  • Assess a community’s capacity for collective action  at the macro, micro, structural and cognitive levels.
  • Employ basic methods to “map” the social and political organization of a community and identify issues that inspire action.
  • Begin a process to transform community tension into focused action.


Tuition covers facility expenses, equipment, course materials, and trainer fees. Participants are responsible for travel, room and board during the duration of the training. Participants should plan to arrive in Fort Collins, Colorado June 10th and depart after 4:30 pm Friday, June 13th.


*Early Bird Tuition: $450

** Tuition increases to $500 after May 15th.

**Disclaimer: Village Earth reserves the right to cancel this training due to low-enrollment or for any other reason with a full refund on all tuition fees. In the event of a cancellation, we are not responsible for airline, hotel or any other cancellation fees or expenses.