Principles of a Successful Community Participation Program
– The scope of activities each level of the CPP is authorized to consider must be clear.
– The chain of authority flowing from neighborhoods and communities must be clear.
– There must be formal city authorization to establish the force of law in the CPP.
– Transparency, honesty and clarity about the purpose, the limits of what can and cannot be changed, who can be involved and how, and what happens as a result.
– The CPP must have adequate resources to manage the process well and to deliver the anticipated results.
– Participation must be as inclusive as possible, with traditionally excluded groups given special support and encouragement for their involvement. Outreach must be genuine and open
– Maximum accessibility so that no participant is excluded because of lack of access to meeting places, timing, language, appropriate support (e.g. child care), etc.
– Accountability: the CPP must be accountable to all those involved. This requires good record-keeping and reporting of both processes and outcomes.
– Learning and development: participatory processes should support a climate of learning and growth among all those involved. This should include ongoing civic education for effective participation by residents and government officials.
– Authority: the CPP must have sufficient legal authority to achieve the agreed objectives.