Community Development Officer

A Community Development Officer supports programmes aimed at reducing poverty and helping to improve the lives of people who live in deprived areas.  The role seeks to involve communities in seeking solutions to the problems they face in partnership with statutory and voluntary bodies.  The Community Development Officer will promote the programme locally, regionally and nationally through strategic engagement with key service providers and other regional and national bodies.  The role identifies good practice within the local authority as well as regionally and nationally ensuring exchange of information and good practice, identifying funding opportunities to deliver both local authority wide and regional initiatives.  There can be staff management responsibilities as well as budget management.

Work Environment
The work involves some office based administration the majority of time is spent working in outreach and community centres in the geographical area being supported. 

Daily Activities
Duties could include:

  • building and maintaining links with strategic partners in all sectors to ensure plans are aligned and integrated with the programme priorities;
  • ensuring the effective involvement of key stakeholders and service providers in the delivery of the programme;
  • identifying and fostering regional initiatives to address needs across both cluster and borough boundaries;
  • identifying and applying for funding to deliver both borough wide and regional initiatives.

Skills & Interests
A Community Development Officer will have:

  • experience of working in community development;
  • knowledge of Results Based Accountability processes (RBA);
  • an understanding of current legislation and policy in relation to social exclusion and poverty;
  • an understanding of and commitment to the role and functions of local government and community development work;
  • an understanding of how social exclusion impacts upon people's lives;
  • the ability to communicate easily and effectively with a wide range of people and organisations;
  • the ability to produce good quality written reports and materials;
  • strong interpersonal skills; the ability to establish productive relationships with elected members, senior officers of the council, external organisations and local residents;
  • the ability to grasp and assimilate new information quickly;
  • the ability to work on own initiative or as part of a team and to give leadership and direction to others;
  • the ability to find solutions to complex and sensitive issues;
  • the ability to work under pressure and to tight deadlines;
  • highly motivated with the ability to demonstrate energy and vision to inspire others;
  • demonstrate the desire to make a positive contribution to improving the quality of life for people in deprived communities;
  • understand the importance and principles of community involvement and participation.

Entry Requirements
Community Development Officers are usually graduates.  A number of UK universities offer relevant degree and postgraduate courses in community development or related subject areas.

Future Prospects & Opportunities
You might work for local or central government or a non-profit making organisation working on community development.

Further Information & Services
Community Development Foundation
Federation for Community Development Learning

You may find further information about this area of work through Careers Wales ( or in your local library, careers office or school careers library.

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