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Topic 5 Conclusions and keys to promote community participation

As seen in the first module, what really determines people’s participation is the degree of decision they have in the process. The “Ladder of Participation” illustrated the necessary conditions to take progressive steps towards full participation: identification with the process and a sense of belonging, a common vision and horizon, solidarity mechanisms and pedagogical methodologies, access to information and the different communication channels, leading role in decision-making, monitoring and evaluation spaces, in cooperation or not with external agents.

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If we remember what the components of participation were, people and communities always have within themselves the skills, knowledge, resources and mechanisms to put into practice the management of their own life or development, and that we cannot speak of a unique exportable model, since it depended on each group and each historical moment or local environment.

Promoting the participation of any person, but especially of those in a situation of poverty or social exclusion, is a factor that enhances the processes of change and transformation, both of the person himself (due to the advantages and benefits for them that have been explained) as well as the community as a whole.

Therefore, it is a recommendation to try to promote this type of processes and implications in our work as dynamic agents of social participation.

By way of closing, a summary table is provided with some of the keys and recommendations for professionals who want to promote participation in the community sphere.