Tuesday, August 09, 2022

" If we work together we will achieve our dreams... "

New Book Release

book_in_our_handsThe Eastern Cape NGO Coalition is promoting a development approach called Eyabantu Ngabantu (for the people, by the people).

The stories in this book prove that people have the power to achieve amazing things with an idea and the passion to follow it through. It shows that people benefit from working collectively, drawing on each other’s skills, energy and ideas. Eyabantu Ngabantu starts the development process from a completely different position to the ‘needs-based’ approach, used in a lot of development work.

The needs-based approach asks, “What are we missing?” Eyabantu Ngabantu, which is based on the asset-based approach and transformative development philosophy, starts by asking, “How can we use and build upon what we already have to bring about the development we want in our community?”

It focuses attention on the strengths of communities including their stories, knowledge, innovations, talents, associations, networks, local institutions, physical and natural resources, financial resources, cultural assets, rights, claims and entitlements and resourcefulness. In Eyabantu Ngabantu terms, even unemployment is an asset that can be used to work for development, because it means there are people with time and energy to put to use. Everyone in an organization or community has something to contribute. Eyabantu Ngabantu calls for communities to look first, within themselves, before depending on outsiders to address their development.

Look at  what you have

Eyabantu Ngabantu starts with people talking together, sharing some of the things they have achieved in their own lives, within their family, at work, or in the community. Then people work together to look at all the assets they possess. A good way to do this is to consider what assets are available by looking at the Head, Hand, Heart and Hip assets.

Head: List all the assets related to the group or community’s knowledge, experience, creativity, professional and business skills etc.

Hand: Think about the physical skills and capabilities people have.

Heart: This is about the depth of feelings and personal strengths of the community and the individuals within it. It includes such things as empathy, commitment, trust, caring etc.

Hip: List all the groups and individuals in the community or further a field who are (or might be) useful connections. Once you’ve done this exercise you can look at the physical assets in the community – the buildings, machinery, roads, tools, equipment, natural resources (such as soil, trees or scenery) – that could also be used to your advantage.