Community Development Programs

World Vision uses a successful community development model which allows communities to become self-sustaining. This model uses a process which occurs in three phases over approximately a 15 year cycle. The key to success is that the communities develop and implement their own plan which is tailored to the specific needs of their community.

Phase 1

Developing trust and a community plan. The first phase occurs over 2 to 3 years. Local World Vision staff help the community to organize themselves so that a fair and representative decision-making process can occur. Community members then develop a plan specific to the needs of their community. The plan takes a holistic approach and includes whatever is needed by the community. This can include programs such as improving agricultural productivity, health and education, disaster preparedness, access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities, HIV and AIDS sensitization and prevention, youth leadership and job skill development and micro-enterprise.

Phase 2

Implementing the plan. The second phase occurs over 7 to 8 years. During this phase, local World Vision staff assist the community in implementing their plan. The community is empowered to implement the plan themselves and plays an active role its development. World Vision provides training, expertise, encouragement and infrastructure development according to the community’s plan. This approach allows the community to develop the leadership skills and pride of community that will make the changes to the community sustainable.

Phase 3

Phase out period. The final phase occurs over a period of about 5 years. During this time, local World Vision staff take a less active role in the community, and let the community take full control of their development plan. The end result is a self-sustaining community where members of the community can take pride in having developed and implemented their own plan, and develop a sense of hope and confidence  for the future. This approach is very effective because it provides a “hand-up”, not a “hand-out”, to a community in need.

World Vision Area Development Programs are funded through child sponsorships. The sponsored children live within the community being supported. The funding for child sponsorships are pooled and used to support the plan developed by the community, thereby benefiting not only the child but also their families and the entire community.

See how it works

Watch this brief animated video to see how child sponsorship is used to transform communities. This highly successful model is used throughout the world by World Vision. This same approach is being used in Haiti. FreddyLink aims to have the Fredericton community come together to help communities in Haiti using this successful approach.