Local Trust Blog: Gang Violence & Communities

A community development approach to empowering communities affected by gang violence

ESB know that gang violence is something both participants and staff on our endorsed courses are facing in their work. In this blog from Local Trust Big Local reps offer four key ways community development approaches can help empower communities affected by these issues. We are living in times where turbulence is the new norm and parts of our communities feel increasingly pressured by everyday life. There is a growing lack of trust between communities and agencies, exacerbating feelings of insecurity and isolation. In addition, there has been a withdrawal of local services, and a growing gap between ‘decision makers’ and those whom decisions are impacted on. Read the blog article here

For aperspective of how one community in London is becoming empowered by tackling issues around children and young people at risk of knife crime and gang violence here is a blog about East Finchley from one of their Big Local reps: Empowering communities: a Big Local perspective

World Community Development Conference 2018

WCDC18Participation, Power and Progress: Community Development Towards 2030 – Our Analysis, Our Actions

Maynooth University, Kildare, Ireland from 24 to 27 June 2018

This conference will provide a unique opportunity for practitioners, participants, academics, policy makers, funders and other stakeholders to share perspectives on current contexts and challenges for community work. The conference will encompass cutting edge inputs, papers, creative installations and poster presentations on rights-based community development, addressing and engaging locally, nationally and internationally with key current issues including:

  • Change and transformation
  • Impact and outcomes: Measuring and monitoring
  • The role of state agencies,regional and local authorities
  • Current rural and/or urban challenges
  • International development
  • Community economic development
  • Environmental justice and sustainable development
  • Women’s rights
  • Gender
  • Poverty
  • Migration
  • Racism
  • Indigenous peoples and minority rights
  • Disability
  • Health
  • Community development standards, education and training
  • Community developmentand other disciplines
  • Civil and political rights
  • Economic, social, andcultural rights

Visit www.wcdc2018.ie for special early registration prices and on campus accommodation.


Current Community Development Practice and Learning

ESB Research report Header

Download the Full Report Here

Download the Summary Report Here

In 2016 the Endorsement and Quality Standards Board for Community Development Learning (England) commissioned an initial piece of research about Community Development activity in England and the opportunities that exist for developing and supporting people involved in their community. We are publishing our findings here.

Teh context for the research was that in 2010 a Government resourced consultation involving a range of key actors from the community development field published an important report entitled The Community Development Challenge (Together We Can). The consultation set out to discern and envisage the future of community development in the UK.  It was noted that Society relies on community development yet the occupation is not well known. Government tends to invest in it unevenly through several funding streams but has no co-ordinated overview. Yet social policies and programmes repeatedly come back to community development as they grapple with the problems of overcoming disadvantage, engaging with residents and making public services work better.

Read more: Current Community Development Practice and Learning

Towards Common International Standards for Community Development Practice

A draft consultation paper for IACD members – December 2017


This discussion paper has been prepared for IACD members. It aims to provide guidance as to common international standards for community development practice. The paper presents the key themes and areas common across community development practice wherever that practice might take place. It identifies the purpose of professional community development practice, the values that should underpin practice and the key methods used by the practitioner.

In January 2017, IACD wrote to all members of the association to inform them that following the adoption of IACD’s new definition of community development at the 2016 AGM, the IACD Training Committee was initiating work to produce Guidance for members around community development practice. IACD has been working with the CLD Standards Council Scotland to take this project forward over the past six months. CLDS was IACD’s partner in organising our 2014 international community development conference in Glasgow and is the specialist agency in Scotland working in this area, with a track record in the production of CD Standards going back three decades.

The paper explains the background to this project and why IACD feels it would be helpful to the various stakeholders involved in community development – practitioners, trainers, employers, funders, policy advisers and most of all the communities they serve – to be able to present a common international understanding as to what is meant by community development practice. In other words, what it’s all about. At this point in the member consultation, IACD is keen to get your views on this draft Guidance. In light of feedback the intention is to then publish Guidance on a set of Common International Standards for Community Development Practice required by stakeholders working in this field.

John Stansfield
Chair IACD Training, Publications and Professional Development Committee.


ESB Annual Report 2016


2016 saw the Standards Board involved in a number of different areas of work and engaging with new organisations. We welcomed new board members and recruited additional readers and reporters.

Summary of our work

1. Dual validation and endorsement with National Youth Agency.

We have further developed our relationship with the Education and Training Sub Committee (ETS) of the National Youth Agency. Reciprocal arrangements exist for being represented on each other’s boards. Work achieved as a result of this relationship includes developing a dual validation/endorsement for the Youth and Community Work programme already endorsed by ETS to strengthen the community development input and assessment. This has involved

  • applying the lessons learnt during the Hull University pilot to the process at Ruskin,
  • producing a guidance handbook including a number of matrices that help with recording of evidence and mapping it to the CD NOS,
  • agreeing a process and clarifying the roles that each organisation will take.

2. Training Agency Group conferences and workshops.

We negotiated a workshop space at each of the three English events held to present the interim results of our commissioned research on the current state of community development. The results of the workshop can be found at http://www.tagpalycw/AGM%20Papers/Association%20Thematic%20Prioritiies%20for%202017-17.pdf . While the workshops were very youth work focussed, we found them useful in raising the profile of ESB and its endorsement work.

3. Research into the current state of community development and learning.

This work was commissioned to inform the above workshops. It took place between March and June and over 180 people completed the practitioners’ survey and nearly 30 training providers. The collation and analysis has produced some useful results, giving a good glimpse into the diverse areas in which community development is practised and the issues being faced as well as identifying a number of training needs. The report will be available early in 2017.

The following endorsements have taken place

  • Conditional endorsement of Edge Hill
  • Full endorsement of Ruskin.

Another dual validation is planned for 2017. We are having discussions with a number of universities about developing a wider community development focus to their youth and community programmes, as a way of attracting more students.

While Sostenga continues to be the only endorsed Recognition Centre, discussions have started about the longer term development of Community Development Learning Hubs which can also be Recognition Centres. A pilot has taken place at Hexagon Housing Association in South London leading to three cohorts gaining certificates and certificating a trainer programme for some of the participants. New cohorts are planned for North Tyneside, Durham, Liverpool and Nottingham.

6. QAA benchmarking

Two board members have been involved to ensure a greater focus on community development.

7. KIS Accreditation.

We are now accredited by this professional, statutory and regulatory decision making panel.

8. Looking to the future.

Following from the closure of some high profile national organisations in 2016, a conference on the future of community development was held at the Third Sector Research Centre, attended by a number of board members. A detailed report was produced which identified some potential areas for development around learning and qualifications.

Following the conference, the Big Local Trust was chosen to receive the legacy money from CDF which, initially, is funding a large scale piece of research into the needs of local communities. ESB has a representative on the research steering group.

Work has been carried out to the Recognition criteria and guidance which are now available for use.