Topic 8: Sustainability of Community Programme


TOPIC 8
SUSTAINABILITY OF COMMUNITY PROGRAMMES
Specific Objectives
1. By the end of this topic, the trainee should be able to:
2. Explain the meaning of sustainability.
3. Discuss the strategies used to ensure sustainability of community programme.
4. Discuss the role of various stakeholders in sustainability of community development programme
5. Discuss the challenges of sustaining community development programme.

INTRODUCTION
Sustainability
-means that a programme or project will continue to field benefits in a community even long after support from outside agencies has been withdrawn.

This entails that either the ideas introduced by the outside agencies have won the hearts of community members by making them work hard to maintain the programme or the project in order to generate enough income to sustain itself.

Community development is generally geared towards continuity of the implemented programs to be utilized not only by the current generation but also by the future generation.

Issue of sustainability began in 1990 when UN commission environment and development (U.N.C.E.D) introduced the need for sustainability refers to the kind of development that does not compromise the ability of future generation enjoying the current environmental resources i.e. the fruits of today’s economic development should not hinder or hamper the enjoyment of natural resources but future generations.

Sustainability in community development is more emphasized by ensuring that community members run the implemented projects independently without external assistance.

STARTEGIES USED TO SUSTAIN COMMUNITY PROGRAMS
This entails how to ensure sustainability in community projects .This will include the following activities

1. There should be maximum supervision of the program from the start to the end by program managers/officers.
2. There should be continuous monitoring and evaluation through the programme time frame.
3. Offering back up e.g. training the community on the challenging areas of the project e.g. monitoring or evaluation. Educating the members on development issues of the project e.g. maintenance e.t.c.
4. Proper planning-conduct of the program before its implementation to see if the programme is viable or not.
5. Removal of constrains-as a programme officer, one should try as much as possible to avoid challenges through a vast array of solutions and use of appropriate mechanisms to curb such constrains (challenges)
6. Strengthening of the institutional capacity-use modern skills and technology to build the capacity of the organization or community so that they can sustain the programme for long.
7. Ensure adequate local resources ,for programme to be sustainable, it is portent that there be enough human, material and financial resources to fund them.
8. Use of participatory approach to ensure sustainable one should count with the people and not for the people this can be done through.
a) Involving people in decision making (indigenous knowledge of how things have been done)
b) Consulting people on the way forward
c) Having a good relationship with the people which promotes a people centered and bottom up development growth.
9. Enactment of policies –it is good to work alongside plans and goals which have a given lifespan e.g. 5 years development.
10. Let the community play the most put in the implementation and the day to day running of the project e.g.
a)leadership management-if the community members are the ones directing and guiding the program they will not let it fail/stop before attaining the desired goals
b) Buildings of coalition-putting of efforts and abilities from other light minded communities
11. The program should be community based or rooted. If programs are not identified by the clients themselves but by the external agency, they do not last because of the following
a) They use the progressive person approach
b) They marginalize grass root
c) Difficulty in ensuring transparency and accountability
d) They lead to pithy/indifference
e) They reduce a community level of motivation and sideline them from solving their problems.
f) They undermine the people’s confidence in leadership
12. Much use of indigenous knowledge, locally available human and other material resources, local leadership structures and appropriate technology.
13. The programme should be targetive or inclusive on the peoples need (felt needs)

Role of various stakeholders in sustaining community

Importance of sustainability of community development programme
1. It ensures continuous functioning and acceptance of program/projects hence eliminating in aspects of collapsing projects.
2. It leads to the attainment of communities responsibilities and goals
3. Enhances he concrete transformation of the community for the better
4. Through the use of local resources (human or natural )there is the cutting down on cost
5. It gives people a chance of participating id designing their own destiny.
6. It boosts the people’s social development potential such as through training and education.
7. It gives or crates a sense of ownership and belonging among the people.
8. It crates confidence among the people in programme implementation since they are the main stakeholders in the process.
9. Through coalition and pulling together of resources available community programme are chosen which later promotes the full utilization of sustainable development.

Challenges in sustainability of development programme.
 Bureaucracy-are set rules that govern the on going programme
 Where the implementing officers are based away from the ground work or the community
 Lack of transparency and accountability
 Limited participation of the people concerned (beneficiaries)
 Lack of knowledge and skills
 Use of progressive person approach
 Marginalization of the grass roots

REVISION QUESTIONS
1 Discuss the role of various stakeholders in sustainability of development programmes?
2. Discuss the challenges of sustaining community development programme?
3. Discuss strategies used to ensure sustainability of community programme?

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