This is the third Learning Brief in a series of Learning Briefs produced by Isandla Institute under the Safer Places: Resilient Institutions and Neighbourhoods Together (SPRINT) Project. The Learning Brief is produced from the discussions at the third Learning Network session, hosted on 21 January 2021, focusing on ‘Working with communities’.
This brief highlights the significant role played by CSOs in society, including playing various roles of ‘watchdog’, advocate, facilitator, as well as directly implementing interventions in working with communities. These roles have had to adapt under the new and increased pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic with CSOs playing a critical part in the response to the pandemic. One of the key messages of the brief is that community led processes are the key to sustainable development and that fostering positive, mutually beneficial relationships with communities that are built on trust should be a priority of the work, as this sets the foundation for the journey together. Another key message is the pivotal role that government, especially local government, can play in creating change when working with communities.