The Handbook of Community Practice

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Marie Weil, Michael S. Reisch, Mary L. Ohmer
SAGE, 2013 - Social Science - 948 pages
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The Second Edition of The Handbook of Community Practice is expanded and updated with a major global focus and serves as a comprehensive guidebook of community practice grounded in social justice and human rights. It utilizes community and practice theories and encompasses community development, organizing, planning, social change, policy practice, program development, service coordination, organizational cultural competency, and community-based research in relation to global poverty and community empowerment. This is also the first community practice text to provide combined and in-depth treatment of globalization and international development practice issues—including impacts on communities in the United States and on international development work. The Handbook is grounded in participatory and empowerment practices, including social change, social and economic development, feminist practice, community-collaborative, and engagement in diverse communities. It utilizes the social development perspective and employs analyses of persistent poverty, asset development, policy practice, and community research approaches as well as providing strategies for advocacy and social and legislative action.

The handbook consists of forty chapters which challenge readers to examine and assess practice, theory, and research methods. As it expands on models and approaches, delineates emerging issues, and connects policy and practice, the book provides vision and strategies for local to global community practice in the coming decades.

The handbook will continue to stand as the central text and reference for comprehensive community practice, and will be useful for years to come as it emphasizes direction for positive change, new developments in community approaches, and focuses attention on globalization, human rights, and social justice. It will continue to be used as a core text for multiple courses within programs, will have long term application for students of community practice, and will provide practitioners with new grounding for development, planning, organizing, and empowerment and social change work.


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Part I The Context of Community Practice
Contexts and Challenges for 21st Century Communities
Chapter 2 History and Context for Community Practice in North America
Chapter 3 Community Practice Challenges in the Global Economy
Chapter 4 Social Justice Human Rights Values and Community Practice
Chapter 5 Theories of Community
Chapter 6 Applying Practice Theories in Community Work
Development Organizing Social Planning and Social Change
Lessons Learned From San Francisco
Chapter 26 YouthLed Organizing Community Engagement and Opportunity Creation
Chapter 27 Restorative Justice and Youth Offending
Part IV Global Issues and Approaches
Chapter 28 Global Change and Indicators of Social Development
Building Economic Opportunity and Social Inclusion
LocalGlobal Issues and Strategies
Chapter 31 Women and Leadership in Development Planning Organizing and Social Change

Chapter 7 Evolution Models and the Changing Context of Community Practice
A Development
Chapter 9 Sustainable Community Development
Comparing and Contrasting Conflict and Consensus Approaches
B Organizing
C Planning
Planning for Services and Communities
Chapter 14 Participatory Methods in Community Practice
Chapter 15 Political Social and Legislative Action
Chapter 16 Radical Community Organizing
Interorganizational Approaches to Social Change
Local State National and International Arenas
Part III Issues Areas and Fields of Community Practice
A Issues and Areas
Chapter 20 Principles Skills and Practice Strategies for Promoting Multicultural Communication and Collaboration
B Fields of Practice and Populations
Chapter 22 Renewing Social Works Commitment to Workplace Justice
Chapter 23 Community Economic and Social Development in a Changing World
Chapter 24 Comprehensive Community Building at a Crossroads in Civil Society
Part V CommunityBased Organizations Community Building Service Coordination Program Design and Resource Development
Chapter 32 The Role of Human Service Nonprofits in Promoting Community Building
Experiences from World Neighbors
Chapter 34 Developing Cultural Competence and Youth and FamilyDriven Services in Systems of Care
Adult Mental Health
Designing Responses to Address Community Needs
A Stakeholder Model
Part VI Research Evaluation and the Use of Technology in Community Practice
Rationale Methods Roles and Considerations for Community Practice
Chapter 39 Community Practice in the Digital Age
Chapter 40 GIS Applications and Administrative Data to Support Community Change
Appendix A Macro Practice Concentrations in Schools of Social Work in the United States
Appendix B ACOSA Competencies
Author Index
Subject Index
About the Editors
About the Contributors

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About the author (2013)

Marie Weil is Berg-Beach Professor of Community Practice and former Associate Dean at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Social Work, where she teaches community practice, policy practice and theory for social work intervention. She has led state-wide research and community-based planning and implementation initiatives in family support and family preservation and for adolescent family life programs, as well as consulting and conducting program evaluations for small nonprofits. Previously, she taught at the University of Southern California. She is the author or coauthor of thirteen books primarily focused on community practice; the author or coauthor of over thirty chapters related to community practice, feminist practice, and empowerment practice and service development for families and children; and more than 42 articles and monographs. She began her career working in community development in settlement houses in Philadelphia. She has served as Deputy Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity of Delaware and as Planning Director of the Wilmington Housing Authority. She is a founding member of the Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA) and was the Founding Editor of the Journal of Community Practice, producing the first ten volumes. She is a recipient of ACOSA’s Career Achievement Award.

Michael Reisch is the Daniel Thursz Distinguished Professor of Social Justice at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work. A former Woodrow Wilson Fellow and Fulbright Scholar, he has held faculty and administrative positions at the University of Maryland, University of Michigan, University of California, Berkeley, University of Pennsylvania, San Francisco State University and the State University of New York, Stony Brook, and been a visiting professor at universities in Europe, Asia, and Australia, . He has also directed national, state, and local policy advocacy organizations, political campaigns, social service agencies, and professional organizations. Reisch is the author, editor and co-editor of over 15 books and monographs and has written over 400 articles, book chapters, and conference papers. His work has been translated into ten languages. He is currently a SAGE advisor and series editor for Social Work in the New Century.

 Mary Ohmer has over twenty years of experience working in community organizing and development around the country with national and local nonprofit and community based organizations, foundations, and government.  Dr. Ohmer has taught consensus organizing approaches as part of macro practice and community organizing social work courses.  She received her Ph.D. in social work from the University of Pittsburgh in August 2004, and she is currently an assistant professor at the School of Social Work at Georgia State University.  Dr. Ohmer is also currently working with the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta to help them develop and implement an evaluation of the community training.  

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