Every organization wants its work to have impact and be valued by the community. But it's easy, especially when working on tough public problems, to end up working on, not with, the community. Even if the program or service manages to impact the problem, it leaves the community in the role of recipients, not actors.
Some organizations are trying to make sure the work they do helps grow the community's capacity to respond to its own problems— a whole different level of impact. One such organization, the Dallas County office of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, was able to use, not only its expertise and resources, but also its position in the community, to tackle the persistent problem of poverty in their region.
When KF talks about community capacity building and institutions aligning their work with the work of citizens, this is what we're talking about.
[Thumbnail photo by Damian Entwistle. Green tint added. CC license: http://goo.gl/eBJykB]