Category Archives: Facilitation & teaching

7 principles guiding my work

When I started facilitating workshops on evidence-based programs and practice as part of the Children and Families Expert Panel, I wanted to ensure that my approach was consistent with my commitment to strengths-based approaches and bottom-up community development. In planning … Continue reading

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Keeping contact with students in online teaching

I’ve recently started emailing students more frequently in the online elective on community engagement I teach at the University of Newcastle. The students come from a wide variety of disciplines: since it started in 2008 there have been 1389 students … Continue reading

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Seven principles for a strengths-based approach to working with groups

There is surprisingly little literature on strengths-based approaches to group work. Most of the available literature focuses on groups as part of a broader strengths-based approach to a particularly issue or target group, rather than a strengths-based approach to actually … Continue reading

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Types of community engagement – creating boxes?

Community engagement covers a very broad range of meanings, aims and strategies. In teaching community engagement to undergraduate and postgraduate students, I need to find ways to explore the diversity of practice that are relevant to students from a wide … Continue reading

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Luis von Ahn: Massive-scale online collaboration

I’ve decided to make this  entertaining and surprising TEDx talk, by Luis von Ahn, required watching in an online undergraduate course (or subject) I teach on community engagement (HLSC2241). Although the course is online, I haven’t included much material about … Continue reading

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Team building before facilitating

This weekend I’m facilitating my 80th Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) workshop (or Help Increase the Peace workshop which is the youth version of AVP), but my first on in over 14 years. One of the things I learnt through … Continue reading

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Questions for an Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) workshop

Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) workshops are experiential in nature which means that an important part of the process is assisting participants to reflect on their experience. Rather than telling them what their experience means, the aim is to ask … Continue reading

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A community engagement reading list

 The following are some readings from a couple of subjects I teach (at both an undergraduate and postgraduate) on community engagement. The reading lists for the two courses are quite different but I have combined them here to provide a … Continue reading

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Updating a course on community engagement

I’m in the process of restructuring the undergraduate online elective I teach on community engagement (HLSC2241). I have made quite a few chances since developing it in 2008, but I’ve been finding students were confusing some of the concepts involved … Continue reading

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Join me at an Unconference in Victoria (24-27 November)

If you are interested in exploring strengths-based processes like asset-based community-driven development and appreciative inquiry, or inclusive group processes like circle work, open space or world café, why don’t you join me at the first Victorian Unconference? In November this … Continue reading

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