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Community Representation, Consultation and Communication Pacific Sexual Diversity Network Leadership Development Suva, 1-5 June 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Community Representation, Consultation and Communication Pacific Sexual Diversity Network Leadership Development Suva, 1-5 June 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Community Representation, Consultation and Communication Pacific Sexual Diversity Network Leadership Development Suva, 1-5 June 2009

2 Overview of session Definitions Mechanisms How they relate Reflection on our own organisations and the PSDN GIPA and the representation of HIV positive MSM and transgenders

3 Community Leadership Representation ConsultationCommunication

4 What is community representation? Speaking on behalf of others or acting on behalf of others (the community) Leadership role Means we are obligated provide representation when asked (by those we are representing and those we are representing to) – for example, as Pacific MSM/TG we are obligated to provide the perspective of our communities when requested Effective representation requires legitimacy Legitimacy = being authentic, valid, ‘official’

5 Legitimate representation CAPACITY: Expertise and ability ENDORSEMENT: A process has taken place where the community has given you a mandate RECOGNITION: Those you are speaking for regard/accept you as speaking for them

6 Important point… All three parts of legitimacy need to be maintained – they can’t just happen once Capacity – continuous effort to ensure you have the skills and knowledge, continued demonstration of capacity Recognition – the community and others must continue to consider you their representative Endorsement – repeated processes are required to show you have the continued support of the community

7 How do I become a representative? Self- appointment Low legitimacy Only possibly legitimate in circumstances where no one else is speaking up NominationModerate legitimacy? Depends on how and by whom the nomination is made ElectionPotentially high legitimacy Depends on fairness and transparency of election Even with high capacity, without recognition and endorsement representation doesn’t occur

8 Answer these questions… Who am I representing? How was this representation determined? How do I maintain confidence in my ability to represent? (capacity, recognition, endorsement)

9 Community consultation – why? Essential for genuine, legitimate and effective representation The way we know we are representing community views accurately The way our communities know we are aware of their views and capable of reflecting their concerns

10 When is consultation necessary? When major and long lasting decisions are be considered When we are about to undertake a new activity or embark on a new direction When we have been asked to provide a representative perspective on a particular issue

11 How do we consult? FORMALLY… By having discussions (by , phone, face to face) Through organised processes (meetings, fora etc.) DELIBERATELY… By specifically asking key questions about a particular topic you want to know about By recording the views expressed in a standardised way … AND OPENLY By promoting the fact we are consulting and why It’s important for those we are consulting with to know they are being consulted at this time Also that the results of the consultation are fed back to them

12 When have I been consulted? Think of a time when you have been consulted as part of your community? What occurred? What was useful about the consultation? What could have been improved?

13 Community communication Providing feedback: What have I been doing on your behalf? How have I reflected your views? Being accessible:

14 Ways to communicate Providing feedback: Posting updates online ( , websites) Writing articles, making presentations, speaking to people (should be formal to some extent) … should be very specific/deliberate/organised Being accessible: Speaking to people Responding when you are asked questions or for information Making ways of contacting you generally available Attending appropriate community events …more casual and informal but approachable and responsive at the same time

15 Community Leadership Representation ConsultationCommunication

16 Representation, consultation, communication Are linked (and are related to accountability and transparency) Sometimes people who become representatives think they don’t have to consult or communicate – because they are representatives! Ongoing consultation and communication is essential for effective ongoing representation

17 Mechanisms – the formal way we make things happen Mechanism RepresentationElections/nominations, participation in meetings, producing and distributing relevant information about your community, providing advice in formal processes etc Consultation , phone, community meetings, documenting feedback on a particular topic or to inform a decision / position you’ll take etc CommunicationUpdates, newsletters, report-backs, responding when asked questions, being contactable etc.

18 Think about your own organisation… What mechanisms does your organisation use for: Representation? Consultation? Communication? If you don’t have these mechanisms, what could be put in place? If you do, can they be improved?

19 Let’s look at the PSDN… What mechanisms are in place for: Representation? Consultation? Communication? How could these be further developed or improved?

20 Representation and GIPA Greater Involvement of People Living with HIV/AIDS Idea that HIV positive people should be supported to participate and be represented in all aspects of the response to HIV/AIDS What does this principle mean for representation? Is it possible for HIV negative people to represent people living with HIV?

21 GIPA and the PSDN What does/could the representation of HIV positive MSM and transgenders mean for the PSDN? How can the PSDN support or facilitate representation of Pacific MSM and transgenders who are living with HIV? Nationally, regionally, globally? What mechanisms could the PSDN use for representation, consultation and communication with Pacific MSM and transgenders who are living with HIV?

22 After this session… How will you pass on what you’ve learnt? Do you need specific assistance, resources or support from ACON and AFAO to do this?

23 Looking at what you’ve produced in this session… Do you want to take forward these ideas and put them into practice? If so, what support will you need from ACON and AFAO to do this?


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