In 2017 our international conference was in Auckland, New Zealand in partnership with the ACDA, New Zealand Community Development Association.

Under the title Sustainably Yours, community development and a sustainable future! This continues our roadshow of events related to the implications for community development of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. For more information, please see the conference website. Some papers from the 2017 New Zealand conference appeared in the April 2017 issue of Practice Insights magazine and you can find the conference report here.

There are many other community development type networks and fora in Oceania and Dee Brook and John Stansfield are keen to share their contacts and their work.  Please contact our Regional Directors for Oceania. John Stansfield ( and Dee Brooks ( )

Together with the Aotearoa/New Zealand Community Development Association we have collaborated on establishing the Global Community Development Exchange GCDEX. See the GCDEX pages of this website.

We have also developed closer links with the Australian Community Workers Association and the ABCD (Asset Based Community Development) regional network and have many members in Australia.

Other networks we have links with in Australia include:

CD Networks for website Australia Borderlands Cooperative


Australia Cultural Development Network


Australia Community Builders NSW


Australia Australian Community Workers Association





Relationship building:

Various relationships have been forged between IACD members who have similar geographical or work alignments. Many of these relationships do not have documented outcomes as they are merely connecting members up with each other although, an increase in many of their Facebook interactions have been noticed.



ABCD Institute (ABCD)


Multiple opportunities to co-badge work with the Insititute are being explored; trainings, workshops, gatherings, fellowships etc


Red Cross Australia


Initial meeting has been held in Sydney, Australia to explore the opportunity to harvest (gather) the community development arm of Red Cross’ story as they explore how to shift from a charity model to a strengths-based, bottom-up department


Australian Community Workers Australia (ACWA)


Initital meeting is locked in for September 2017 to explore how to strengthen relationships between ACWA and IACD





Desired outcomes
Centre for Social Impact (CSI)


Both of these organisations have potential to increase IACD’s regional profile with mutually beneficial opportunities
The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI)



International strengths-based course identification project:

A proposal has been made to IACD from the Women in Communities network in conjunction with ABCD Asia Pacific network, The Constellation, Jeder Institute and other global partners to map CD strengths-focused courses around the world.


  • IACD were starting to map CD degree programmes and we need to link in with that key person
  • We offer it as a 12 month project and co-badge it as IACD work with various global contributors

Initial thoughts:

  • We develop a rubric/grading system for courses
  • This could internationally encourage institutions to become more strengths-based, to move up the grade
  • We don’t need everyone, only those who feel drawn to this


Suggested actions:

  • The Women in Communities group write a blurb about who we are
  • The Women in Communities group write a blurb about what we, as a group, mean by strengths-focused or strengths-based practices


Co-badging opportunities:

Opportunity #1:

Family Action Centre, University of Newcastle, Australia in conjuneciton with the Jeder Institute will be co-hosting the following event and are keen to co-badge with IACD. IACD members Dee Brooks and John Stansfield have already been informally invited, pending further funding requirements.

GCIFS Symposium 2018

Proposed Dates – 29 & 30 April, 1 & 2 May 2018

International Expert Symposium on Family and Community Strengths

Putting Family and Community Strengths in Place:

Local and global solutions for integrating evidence, policy and practice

Opportunity #2:

The ABCD Institute, the ABCD Asia Pacific network and the Jeder Institute will be developing a calendar of events for 2018 on blended methodlologies which will offer a series of immersive and experiential, strengths-based workshops covering a range of community engagement and development practices. This consortium would like to explore the opportunity to co-badge these events with IACD and will include a broad range of contemporary practitioners.

Social media:

Facebook pages and groups:

Cross-pollination between IACD Official, ABCD Asia Pacific network, ABCD In Action (Official) has increased significantly and has been great fun! The stories of citizen action around the world seem to be the ones that people are responding to most and there is a proposal in this to start exploring the opportunity for IACD to record face-to-face interviews with people to highlight on the official page.

Webinars and story gathering opportunities are huge here and will be a focus of the Oceania region in the upcoming 12 months.

This is an example of an IACD CD and SDG training programme run in the region.


You, Me and the SDGs Sustainable Development Goals Workshop 14 July 2016

“You, Me and the SDGs” was a workshop designed to educate Community Development Practitioners on Agenda 2030, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and encouraged us to think about where we see these goals being worked towards in our lives and workplaces. It was piloted on the 14th of July in Auckland, New Zealand and then travelled to New York to the United Nations High Political Forum, Side Event, receiving very positive feedback from participants at both events.

Key Learning’s:

What are the SDG’s?

The workshop began with discovering  what Agenda 2030 and  the SDG’s are,  and where they came from. Agenda 2030 is a coming together of the Millennium Development goals (MDGs) and the Sustainable Development Track. The MDGs focused on the eradication of poverty and its ill-effects for the people in least-developed nations; and the Sustainable development track was focused on environmental sustainability. Agenda 2030 recognises both environmental and social wellbeing as interrelated and the 17 SDGs and their 169 targets aim to address both these streams in an integrated way. Two short and informative clips, one on the SDG’s[1], and one on its predecessor the MDG’s[2], as well as a quiz[3] on the MDGs were used to help educate participants in a fun and interactive way.


Key differences between SDGs and other UN goals

In this learning space it was important to note some differences between the MDGs and the SDGs. This time around with the SDGs, there was wide consultation across civil, public and private sectors of society, and it was the Nation States through the Open Working Group, who drafted the SDGs and their targets.  This approach sees the goals resting upon a foundation of collaborative participation in their design and implementation.

A second remarkable difference is that while the MDGs focused primarily on least developed nations, the SDGs recognise there is work to be done across all nations. The increased focus of the MDGs in our least developed nations means they are way ahead of the game in understanding the goals and putting them into practice and have much to offer the rest of us.


How do the SDGs relate to Community Development?

The workshop proceeded to have participants think about how the SDGs relate to our work as Community Development practitioners. The SDGs and the processes surrounding their emergence align well with Community Development values of social justice, empowerment, equity, participation, inclusion, self-determination, and comradeship.

The SDGs are already being addressed through many Community Development organisations and initiatives. Both local and international examples of these were featured in the workshop. Poverty for example is being addressed by microfinance organisations like the Grameen Bank[4]; Hunger through community garden initiatives like Rooftop Republic[5]; Health and Wellbeing through community health initiatives like the Pilton Community Health Project[6]; Quality Education through projects like The Community Learning Project[7] and in community led building initiatives like the Africa School Assistance Project[8] and so on.

The initiatives mentioned above are not solely addressing the goal beside which they are identified, but are working more holistically as all the goals are linked in some way, shape or form.

To demonstrate this, the workshop used a card game activity. Cards representing each of the goals were labelled with a picture of the goal on one side, and a description of its targets on the other. Groups of 3-4 people selected three goals that were important to them. They were then encouraged to discuss and record the following:

  • Why are the goals important to you?
  • Where are these goals in your life and workplace?
  • Where do you see your organisation working on these goals in the future?

Each group then fed back to all participants.

Opportunities for collaboration on the goals

It is an important time for Community Development Professionals as the SDGs are applicable to all sectors, the public and the private and at local, regional and national levels and across all nations leaving much room for collaboration. Using local examples of sector collaboration in practice, the workshop encouraged participants to think about and discuss in groups:

  • Where are the opportunities for my organisation to collaborate on the goals?
  • What other Community Development initiatives do I know that focus on these and relative issues?
  • Who in other sectors are potential partners in meeting these goals?
  • How will I find out who they are?
  • How will I get them engaged?
  • Discuss and record two things each participant will do to progress this further.

The SDGs are already being addressed by Community Development organisations and in initiatives around the globe. It is our job now to identify where the links are, establish networks around the goals, and use them to further push for a sustainable and just future for all.