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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The practice of community development in Kenya: challenges and issues for professionalisation
Author:Mulwa, Francis W.ISNI
Periodical:Africanus (ISSN 0304-615X)
Geographic term:Kenya
Subjects:community development
professional workers
Abstract:This article examines Kenya's efforts to professionalize community development and the hurdles it has had to grapple with. It is argued that community development is a relatively new practice that is emerging to assert its identity. It has not been fully recognized as a professional discipline as yet. For years, community development issues were presumed to be embraced in the mainstream social disciplines. Community development as a concept and a practice is presented here as an organic, complex and dynamic process that defies universality of principles and definition. It is a people-driven experience as opposed to expert-centred initiative. The article expounds on the efficacy of Kenya's community development strategies from post-independence years to the more recent experiences in the era of Kenya's Constituency Development Fund (CDF). The article laments that good professional management standards have been compromised in the name of community participation. It argues that sound leadership and responsible management cannot be substituted. It interrogates the implications of exclusivity in targeting the poor with the noble intention of narrowing the gap between the haves and have-nots. The role of 'external' donors is discussed as well as its implication on influence and control. Related to this phenomenon are challenges pertaining to the bureaucratization of community development services. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]