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Practical tools to impact Madagascar

This story is written by Doris F, a former Community Development School student

I have worked in Madagascar for about five years. We are about to pioneer YWAM works in two different locations outside of the capital city where we are based. I am so grateful that I could do the Community Development School (CDS) because I didn’t know how to start and  enter a community. We have been building relationships with people in the new locations in which we will work, but I realize now, through the CDS, that we haven’t involved the community enough in researching what they see as their felt needs and what projects they really want. We thought a clinic is needed in one of the villages because many people complain about how far they have to go for treatment and a lot of people die. But this is probably too big of a project for us to start with as we don’t want to be paternalistic. The community needs to be involved, participate and own the project so they feel that they have done it themselves. If the community owns the project it will be sustainable. So, a small start where people will have success is the way to go. Then, when they get more confidence, a bigger project is possible. My part is to be a facilitator – not someone who just goes and just does things for people. I have been challenged in my thinking, relationship with God and getting new revelations about how to work in communities.