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Course Description

The importance of an approach to community-development that increases the rights of poor and marginalized people within governing structures has never been more apparent. Situations of severe oppression and marginalization demand organizing-techniques that go beyond a traditional “hand-out” style approach to development. Taking a practical hands-on perspective, this course will explore the theories, tools, styles and challenges of community-based organizing. It will discuss practical strategies for developing community leadership and working with marginalized communities. Together, we will discover the impact that ordinary individuals can have on the world.

Upon completion of this course participants will be able to:

  • Apply basic organizing techniques, such as popular education and direct action
  • Understand the role of privilege, race, gender and class in struggles for change
  • Understand the history and basic principles of community organizing
  • Design methods to help support and organize the community in which they are working

Feedback from previous course participants

“I have never given much thought at all to human organization, and this class is REALLY challenging me to broaden my thinking in this area. Particularly, how these structures give a hint of the social climate and where empowerment is needed. I think that this will make me pay a lot more attention to what kinds of social organizations exist in a community.”

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Learn more about the VE/CSU Online Certificate Program