Community organising is an approach to social change that works by developing power within a constituency seeking change so that they develop the resources they need to achieve the purpose they want. In organising, the power to make change does not come from having more money, a clearer message, or control over people. Instead, power is rooted in developing the capacities and resources of the constituency through leadership development.
Meeting the expanding demands on the health system requires CM Health to shift from intervention to prevention, from reactive care to proactive health promotion. Physical and mental wellbeing starts at home – not in the hospital.
Community Organising as described above, provides the means to supporting our district’s population taking shared responsibility for health by taking measures to prevent illness, stay healthy, and seek help and support early.
Handle the Jandal is a poly-youth led campaign enabling youth to lead and take action to enhance youth mental health and well-being. The campaign has 3 sub-campaigns aimed at addressing issues confronting poly-youth in relation to tertiary education, depression and parent- youth relationships.
An article describing this work has been published in Australasian Psychiatry
The central change idea (more hunch than proven idea) informing this initiative is that people living well – living self-defined satisfying and fulfilling lives – will be less likely to require health care services and more capable of supporting others to live well, creating a virtuous cycle of health and well-being across the Counties Manukau district.
The initiative is also a test of an approach to change framed through the lens of complexity theory. Central to this approach is the perspective that “the future already exists in the present”. A preferred future already manifests itself at the margins of our present as weak signals – what we think of as bright spots. The approach to change is to discover these weak signals and devise strategies to amplify them.
If these bright spots represent a preferred future for South Auckland, Ko Awatea wanted to explore what it would take to have more of these stories of health and well-being.
TEDxManukau, and a collaborative aimed at spreading the Yendarra School food system currently in the design phase, represents our initial safe to fail experiments learning how to answer this question.
The second TEDxManukau is planned for 11 June 2016.