(This PAS support has been archived as it is no longer an automatic part of our support programme - the tools are still useful but may require updating as they are a few years old). Here are some self-serve tools to help with the role you can play in supporting community involvement activities, better equipping you to ensure that the outcomes of a consultation process are effectively translated in to better plan making and that the community benefits from the advocacy opportunities that you have a requirement to provide as part of the planning system.
PAS Community Engagement Support Module Briefing Note
You may have developed, supported or been on the front line of community engagement activities in the past, but which side of the table were you on? Is there a difference and does it really matter? Have you had some difficult experiences during engagement exercises with the public, do you think that you are just not cut out for that sort of work?
We believe that there are a wide range of skills that are required for developing and then delivering an effective engagement process. This workshop will help you to translate the results of the consultation into better plan making. The community will also benefit from your ability to help them express their views in a way that can positively shape the plan.
Who is the support for, what is its purpose and what are the benefits to me?
The module has been developed for groups as small as three of four people but also as large as more than 10 people, it is all about what your needs are. The investment of your time in attending this workshop will help you to understand what role you can play in supporting community involvement activities. We also believe that through undertaking this workshop it will equip you to ensure that the outcomes of a consultation process are effectively translated in to better plan making and that the community benefits from the advocacy opportunities that you have a requirement to provide as part of the planning system.
Put yourself in the shoes of the different stakeholder groups for a minute (a developer, Local Planning Authority or community representative). Ask yourself what are your motivations for becoming involved in a consultation process and what would keep you involved? Could the potential of a proposed development change a/your community? What would an effective consultative process really look like to each of the stakeholder groups? How might these differ and how do you find common ground?
Community engagement can come in many different shapes and sizes and also may require a multitude of differing approaches. This is often dependent on the subject matter or topics that need to be discussed. Over 75% of the challenge of making community engagement effective is, understanding the process and having an effective plan to support the delivery of a range of activities. It is not rocket science, it is about being organised and understanding your audiences' concerns and motivation and helping them to better understand the issues as much as the process.
You are free to download these and use as you see fit: