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Question: What kind of community work one can do?

            What kind of community work can one do?  How many stars are in the sky?
          Your question is an important one, because it points to the very wide range of community work that can be done. And the short answer to it  is “many kinds.” 
          Community work starts with a problem, or issue, or simple concern or question you have about your community, or communities in general.  (Perhaps you can already see how wide-ranging the work can be, even at the beginning.)
          The work itself involves finding an answer to your initial concern, that question, and often applying your findings to the community in question, so that you create better outcomes for that community. -   Those outcomes might take different forms, such as improvements in health conditions, better education, more economic opportunities, or a more equitable distribution of resources.   
          In doing community work, a variety of methods are available to you – for example, interviews, questionnaires, observation, experiments, advocacy, and direct action. Specialized training in using these methods and in understanding community life may be helpful to you, depending on your particular interests. Community workers can and do come from many different backgrounds, and can and do pursue many different kinds of training to improve their work -- even though it is still possible to be a very effective community worker with no specialized training at all.  
          Since community concerns vary widely from person to person and from community to community, “community work” takes in a very wide territory. And that means there is an enormous amount of work that can be done to help bring about the world most of us would like to see -- one where everyone’s basic needs are met, where peace and justice prevail, and where everyone has the opportunity to reach one’s full potential.   If you choose a path that involves community work, the chances are you will never be bored!
      When we were starting our own career, we came across this quote from an American social reformer of the 19th century, who said,  “In a world where there so much to be done, there must be something for me to do.”  Do you agree? We believed that then, we still believe it now, and we hope that you will come to believe it for yourself.
          We hope some of these thoughts may be helpful to you. Thank you for writing to us at the Community Tool Box, and all best wishes for success in whatever work you choose to do.

Question Date: sam, 06/24/2023