Participatory Action Research or PAR brings people together to define for themselves what problems they face in their community, find solutions through talking with and gathering data from their peers, and then implementing those solutions through strategic and informed actions. It’s a model of community organizing that builds the capacity of people on the front-line of a problem to take leadership in creating the change they want.
Youth-Led Participatory Action Research or YPAR is exactly what it sounds like. Young people are the researchers who through the action research build their capacity to share their expertise and take leadership in overcoming their own problems, with support from adult allies.
“…YPAR represents a fundamental, critical strategy for youth development, youth-based policy making and organizing, and education.” – Julio Cammarota and Michelle Fine
I offer either coaching and support for a full project or individual trainings for any step along the way.
Coaching and support for a full PAR or YPAR project:
Curriculum, weekly check-ins, training for trainers & co-facilitation as needed: From objective setting to curriculum and activity design, facilitation training, and strategy development your group will receive all of the support needed from start to finish of a full PAR or YPAR project. We will start with an intake process with all involved staff to design our approach and assess exactly what kind of support would be most useful. Content can cover theory, curriculum, activities, methods and co-facilitation.
- Participatory Action Research – overview and applications for community organizers: This workshop will introduce your group to the potential that participatory action research holds for building expertise among the community you are working with so that leadership truly does come from those who are being impacted by the problem. We will cover the philosophy behind PAR, the steps from start to finish of running a PAR project as well as tips for curriculum design and sample lessons.
- Developing a research team: This highly fun and experiential workshop covers not only strategies for recruiting community based researchers, but oodles of fabulous games and ice-breakers to build relationships and create healthy group dynamics and norms that can be used throughout a PAR process. We will not only play the games, but reflect on how to adapt and facilitate them, how to use them to teach content as well, and who to use them or not use them with!
- Research Design: This training covers the important and inspiring steps of 1) identifying an issue to focus on 2) developing vision and preliminary goals 3) identifying a research question which, if answered, will enable the group to achieve their vision 4) identifying which research tool to use (surveys, interviews, focus groups, photovoice or observation) and finally 5) designing the tool.
- Data Collection: In this training, participants will learn skills for using the tool (tips for conducting interviews, surveys etc) documenting the data (video, camera, recorder etc) organizing data, and then we will go out and do it!
- Data Analysis: The most rewarding, exciting and challenging aspect to PAR, we will identify emergent themes, develop filters to create data sets, dive in and come up with findings that are each backed by supporting evidence. Then we will decide what we want to recommend and who we want to recommend it to.
- Report Writing and Presentation: Does your group want to talk to city council? Present a play, a powerpoint, make a movie or a website? Perhaps they want to facilitate an interactive workshop with some of the key decision makers or stake holders they have identified and develop a written report to give them. In this training we will decide our audience, and from there decide what the best way to reach that audience is – then design it, write the report outline, and rehearse the presentation.
- Action!: Still no change? Time to escalate? This training series will review the various tactics that we could use and decide which ones would be most strategic to influence our audience and create change, then we will design them, organize for them, and do them. Tactics could include anything from holding up huge banners to street theater to creating and putting up posters all over town to having a sit in.
“Human existence cannot be silent, nor can it be nourished by false words, but only by true words, with which men and women transform their world. To exist, humanly is to name the world, to change it. Once named, the world in its turn reappears to the namers as a problem and requires of them a new naming. Human beings are not built in silence, but in word, in work, in action-reflection. But while to say the true word- which is work, which is praxis- is to transform the world, saying that word is not the privilege of some few persons, but the right of everyone. Consequently, no one can say a true word alone – nor can she say it for another, in a prescriptive act which robs others of their words.” – Paulo Freire
Coming upUPCOMING EVENTS
Currently none scheduled
April 28, 6:30 PM PRESENTATION: Action Research Community Reception and Recognition, AERA conference. In the Grand Ballroom East, Grand Hyatt, San Francisco
Oct 6,7 WORKSHOP: Theater of the Oppressed 101 at the Center for Political Education, San Francisco. A follow up to Popular Education 101.
May 16,23 WORKSHOP: Participatory Action Research for educators and organizers at the Center for Political Education, San Francisco. Registration is open here: www.politicaleducation.org
June 3 WORKSHOP: From Forum to Action; Participatory Action Research grounded in Theater of the Oppressed At the Pedagogy and Theater of the Oppressed Conference, Berkeley. Register here: http://www.ptoweb.org/
dates tbd, 11:00-5:00 April 28-31 WORKSHOP: "Practices in Youth-Led and Theater-Based Participatory Action Research" & PRESENTATION: Youth-Led Action Research to Heal the Streets 9th Annual Action Research Conference at the UCSD’s School of Leadership and Education Sciences San Diego, CA
March 28-31 WORKSHOP: "Exploring the Intersections of Whiteness and Femaleness" White Privilege Conference Albuquerque, NM
Feb 21, 6:00-9:00pm White Noise Dialogue to explore why so many people socialized as white and female are in helping professions. San Francisco.
Feb 27 & March 3, 11:00-5:00 WORKSHOP: Popular Education 101: Theories and Practices for organizers. At the Center for Political Education, San Francisco. A remixed and re-offered version of Paulo Freire 101 offered last Spring.
Oct 15, 10:30-12:00 Neighborhood Safety Summit, Laney College, Oakland. Last year's Heal the Streets youth fellows and OPD officers will talk about their mistrust of each other, and what to do about it.
Oct 18, 6:00-9:00 White Noise monthly dialogue, San Francisco. People socialized as both white and female talk about Cultural Appropriation www.conspireforchange.org
July 21 Chicago, IL, PTO conference Workshop: Harvesting Knowledge for Collective Action: Youth-Led Participatory Action Research at the Pedagogy and Theater of the Oppressed Conference
July 23, 24, 30, 31 @ 4pm San Juan Bautista, El Teatro Campesino Free Performance: Popol Vuh, Heart of Heaven
August 4-7, 2011 Portland, OR, Aero Conference 2 Workshops: Participatory Theater for Educators & Youth-Adult Partnerships: Practicing Youth-Led Participatory Action Research
September 3, 4, 5 @ 1pm San Juan Bautista, El Teatro Campesino Free Performance:Popol Vuh: Heart of Heaven, Seven Macaw & the Magic Twins