The activity of raising awareness of the community about the political, social and personal issues is known as a consciousness-raising, and it can be achieved through empowerment. Different societies have strategies they apply for their community and social change, and in these approaches consciousness, rising is involved. The essay will discuss community psychology and how the communities can enhance change for the better and how consciousness-raising is included in these community approaches.
One of the approaches of improving society and it involves consciousness rising is through the collaboration of the members of the community. Through the partnership, the members of the community can exchange information and dialogue which raises awareness on the issues that affect the community. According to Kloos and other authors of the book” Community Psychology” collaborations of the members of the community offer strength that is a pathway to solving the problems in the society (Kloos et al., 2012). An example of how collaboration can involve consciousness-raising is through research that can be conducted by the members of the community on the needs of the citizens, and the findings can advocate for changes in the society through decision making.
An example of research that may call for change through consciousness -raising is sexism in the United States which discriminates and affects the growth of the community. Collaboration raises awareness on the issue of sexism and how the individuals can address this issue for a better tomorrow. According to the article by Thomas and others, there is an example of a community psychologist who was known as Tom Wolff (Kloos et al., 2012) who applied the approach of collaboration to create awareness on health. The psychologist involved the coalition of community health who worked with local citizens to make plans on health initiatives that would bring about change. Through this initiative awareness on health issues is created and hence an excellent example of how consciousness could be involved in community change strategies. However, Empowerment and citizen participation have limitations in that it strengthens one group at the expense of the other. At one point, the policy is viewed to promote personal goals in which the feelings of the community are not considered.
The other strategy that is addressed by in the article is empowerment and citizen participation which is considered by the authors as fundamental. This approach is considered in the perspective of organizations, individual relationships, and communities in which it enhances the ability of the population to control lives. According to Kollo and other authors (Kloos et al., 2012), the process that works across contexts and involves access to the resources in the community and exercising power to make decisions collectively. Exercising power by the citizens is what is known as citizen participation, and it ensures that democracy is used in making the decision. Creating awareness in the community based on this perspective is related to respect for diversity, social justice and sense of community. Every individual is empowered to make decisions to change the community on an issue that is considered to affect the growth of society such as discrimination against some communities based on their diversity. Also, empowerment has given the community the strength to confront a political regime that is harassing the community (Moreau, 1990). Through empowerment, society is aware of the type of authority and ways to confront the oppressing jurisdiction in the community and the country.
Empowerment of the communities and collaborations are some of the strategies that are applied to create awareness of the critical issues that affect the growth of the community. The society needs to understand the essential items that affect the growth of the community such as healthcare issues, political issues, and social issues. The stakeholder in the community psychology should ensure that consciousness-raising is enhanced through these social approaches.
Kloos, B., Hill, J., Thomas, E., Wandersman, A., & Elias, M. J. (2012). Community psychology: Linking individuals and communities. Cengage Learning.
Moreau, M. J. (1990). Empowerment through advocacy and consciousness-raising: Implications of a structural approach to social work. J. Soc. & Soc. Welfare, 17, 53.
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