On one of the social good industry’s most killer assumptions: That in the developing world, nothing exists, i.e. that there’s a blank slate upon which our interventions can be built.
Guest post by an aid worker in South Sudan: “Participation is a development anthem whose lyrics are not patriotically respected by the professionals of development. Even though the concept has been popularized…most projects still manipulate beneficiaries to accept outsiders’ wishes.”
Development practitioners and international “do-gooders” insert themselves in the difficult, yet ultimately fulfilling space between the inherent complexities of engaging communities in social change.