51 / Developing neighborhood and community support systems

8 – 16 June 2003   print this page

Course directors:

Owusu Bempah, University of Leicester, United Kingdom
Burt Galaway, University of Manitoba, Canada
Ronald Lutz, University of Applied Sciences Erfurt, Germany
Dada M. Maglajlic, Bemidji State University, United States

Course description:

Participants will examine contemporary trends and issues in the development of neighborhood and community work in the context of "thinking globally, acting locally". In particular, issues of power, oppression and resistance, as well as the role of social movements, user groups, activists and professionals will be addressed through theory, case examples and testimony. Consideration is given to the strategies and alliances available to social and community workers to strengthen supportive neighborhood networks. This course defines the notion of civic disability broadly to encompass social groups who are or feel themselves to be excluded and/or marginalized from important areas of society. Given groups may consider themselves excluded/marginalized on grounds such as social and economic status, ethnicity, gender, age, physical disability, mental disability, etc. The course aims to encourage participants to explore the causes and effects of civic disability/social exclusion. It will also examine the mechanisms through which civic disability becomes institutionalized. An equally important aim of the course is to motivate participants to explore the role of the caring professions, including social work, in tackling civic disabilities.