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Strategic Guidance for Community Planning Partnerships: Community Learning and Development

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2. The purpose of CLD, and the outcomes we expect

2.1 CLD should empower people, individually and collectively, to make positive changes in their lives and their communities, through learning. The principles that underpin practice are:

  • empowerment - increasing the ability of individuals and groups to influence matters affecting them and their communities;
  • participation - supporting people to take part in decision-making;
  • inclusion, equality of opportunity and anti-discrimination - recognising some people need additional support to overcome the barriers they face;
  • self-determination - supporting the right of people to make their own choices; and
  • partnership - ensuring resources, varied skills and capabilities are used effectively.

The purpose and principles are embodied in the competences and ethics for CLD practice as set out by the CLD Standards Council for Scotland. 2

2.2 Our previous guidance (Working and Learning Together, 2004) outlined CLD priorities as (i) achievement through learning for adults; (ii) achievement through learning for young people; and (iii) achievement through community capacity building. These priorities provided a clear focus for CLD, but we were told in our recent discussion phase, they sometimes led to artificial boundaries for practice between age groups and between work with individuals and groups.

2.3 The Government's National Performance Framework sets out the strategic objectives for all public services, including those delivering CLD (see Annex B). Within this, CLD's specific focus should be:

  • improved life chances for people of all ages, including young people in particular, through learning, personal development and active citizenship
  • stronger, more resilient, supportive, influential and inclusive communities.

2.4 CLD helps to develop the resilience and ambition needed to combat the effects of economic factors which cause deprivation and inequality. It ensures that barriers to achieving better life chances are identified, understood and overcome and that communities are full partners in delivering practical and policy solutions.