Stimulating ABCD thinking and action within the annual South African government planning process
JANINE WARD & ANNE TIMMS – SOUTH AFRICA
Background: SPACE for Impact
Blending a combined 64 years of community and enterprise development experience, the founding Directors (Anne E. Timms and Janine Ward) share their skills and passion for asset-based citizen-led development in a holistic flow of goods and services. With a skilled team of facilitators, individuals and community groups are guided through a participatory process of igniting personal potential to strengthen community capacity for citizen-driven change. The belief behind the vision (to Spark Personal And Community Essence) is that everyone has within them the potential (essence) to do things for themselves, but because of life circumstances or environmental, political or social pressures and injustices, it is challenging to realize this potential. SPACE for Impact comes alongside and sparks that potential into life, and support individuals or groups until they are strengthened to continue on their own.
Our key areas of focus is:
- quantitative measurement tools (Poverty Stoplight – www.povertystoplight.org.za)
- foundational Asset-Based Citizen-led Development (ABCD) training personal skills development (goal-setting and vision boards; Truth About Trust; Tree of Life; NLP, HIV competence; financial literacy; business management, economic development, capacity building)
- and portable skills development – a wide range of skills in animal and plant production; mechanical; road and building construction, household; legislation and more
- intensive one-on-one, virtual or group mentorship to ensure success for projects, entrepreneurs and enterprises.
Janine and Anne have been facilitating ABCD Masterclass sessions since February 2018 in South Africa (Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban) and have had a total of 134 participants in these sessions in that time. Initially the participants were from the non-profit or corporate sector, but from the beginning of 2019, the interest of the South African government was evident – largely from the successful ABCD Imbizo (3rd International ABCD event following on from Blackpool and Goa) that took place in South Africa in February 2018. During 2019 many of the participants in the Masterclass sessions have been from various government departments, specifically the Public Participation Unit within the Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) department.
This has been exciting for us, as the partnership with local government structures is critical for the success of the annual planning processes that take place at community level across the country. In the past, these processes simply paid lip service to the policy of community involvement in government planning, which has led to frustration on the ground when people feel their ideas for developing their own areas have not been sought.
Several ABCD Masterclass graduates who attended from COGTA have recently been involved in the community planning processes, and the feedback has been phenomenal – people are feeling heard, they have enjoyed the mapping exercises, they speak of being united in a common purpose and the senior Councillors and City of Joburg Managers are calling for the ABCD approach to be rolled out across the country.
Submitted by Janine Ward & Anne Timms
17th September 2019
Johannesburg, South Africa