Development, progress and wellbeing have no meaning - neither are they sustainable - until they are shared by all. For us, at Praxis, participation in development means much more than a mechanical process realised through the application of a set of tools. It is a complex process that requires adequate facilitation skills, attitudes and readiness to unlearn previous knowledge, challenge oneself and the surrounding power structures.
Community-based research informs various stages of an organisation/project lifecycle – starting from a needs’ assessment, baseline assessment, mid-term assessment, monitoring and evaluation or an endline assessment. As a methodology, it includes the voices of all stakeholders in project plans, reviews and evaluations – especially the community. It helps all stakeholders set joint process and impact indicators for success. From this, stakeholders jointly monitor and evaluate whether the project has met the objectives which it had set out to achieve and whether the outputs and outcomes have positively affected those that they were meant for.
Within this methodology of participatory research, the community is not just a data source or a data point, but participants of collective analysis. Participatory development sees the community not as a beneficiary, but as an agent of change.
Praxis facilitates participatory, community-based research on a range of sectors and themes from child labour, bonded labour, health, education, etc., across the country.