Whose reality counts?


Its however true that we need donors, lenders, agencies and the local people in order to realize participation and partnership, a vocabulary that has been in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) especially goal 8 for already 11 years.  But the question which still remains unanswered is, Whose reality counts?.  The increasing disconnect between the donors, lenders, agencies and the local people still pose a threat to participation and partnership making it paternalistic.

There is need for those who fund participatory development to understand that, it does not requires too much or too fast onto a bigger scale (Chambers, IDS), to exert unfavorable conditions such as accountability which instead discourages participation but the prime condition should be the power relations between the poor and the donor or agency, calling for  “a win win situation”.

In participatory development approaches,  good ethical practices are paramount valuable  to avoid the intended beneficiaries  suffering from the repercussions as participation raises poor people’s expectations, generates conflicts within communities, consumes poor people time especially during consultative meeting and dis-empower or endanger the lives of the poor through the information shared among them  which can be used against poor people. There is therefore need to have  fair terms or conditions for participatory development to achieve its intended objectives and there is also need to educate those who are  in power to support this approach by ensuring a favorable environment through enhancing democratic processes in their governance systems which can give room for participation.



One Response to “Whose reality counts?”

  1. ngoziokei Says:

    For the sustainability of any common goal to be achieved, there should be a balanced approach in the participation and partnership process. The success of a democratic government, is based on an excellent partiscipatory approach, the top to bottom and bottom to top approach, sustainability and maintainance of a common goal resources. According to Chambers, R. (1997) “Whose reality counts?” For any increase/development in the ecomomic growth, of any community or nation, the commons reality are the ones that counts first. The government should always put the first thing first, in addressing any issue.

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