According to your textbook, “As a generalist practitioner, to engage and assess at the macro level requires a variety of skills. Not only must you employ the interpersonal skills that you use with other-size systems, but you must also understand how communities work. Accurate assessment of community functioning can provide you with a foundation to initiate community change” (Kirst-Ashman & Hull, 2018). One aspect of this is understanding how power and decision-making occur in a community context.

To build your assessment skills, this week you will attend a community meeting that addresses issues within the community. This community meeting could be a school board meeting, local government meeting, neighborhood organization meeting, or civic association meeting. Virtual alternatives are acceptable if your schedule does not allow for an in-person community meeting. If you have questions please ask your faculty member.

After the meeting, write a 700- to 1,050-word summary and analysis that should include the following:

  1. Name of agency/meeting, location, date, time, and number of persons in attendance
  2. Purpose/agenda of the meeting and (if known) any background information or events that have a bearing on the meeting
  3. Leadership and decision-making process (formal or informal, who leads meetings/keeps order, etc.)
  4. If community residents were present, how was (or wasn’t) their voice present or recognized in the meeting? How did they participate in the policy discussions (frequency, intensity, driving the agenda)?
  5. How was power seen at the meeting (consider gender, race, class)?
  6. Impression of the meeting and personal learning as a result of attending the meeting
  7. Reflect on how comfortable you would feel engaging with attendees of this community meeting on policy advocacy or policy proposal.
  8. How did you feel about this meeting?
  9. Would you be okay proposing or advocating for social policy in this meeting? Why or why not?

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