The personal and collective strategic empowerment
"Pain cannot solely be defined as physical or even mental suffering, but rather as a decrease in (if not a total loss of) one’s ability to take action, one’s power to act, perceived as a blow to the integrity of one’s self." - Paul Ricœur, Philosopher (1913-2005)
The personal and collective strategic empowerment is a specific empowerment approach who aims to empower people benifiting from social support. It was created by Yann Le Bossé. This specific approach empowers the person in her ability to take action. The personal and collective strategic empowerment is “the concrete possibility for individuals and communities to exercise greater control over what is important to them, their families or the communities they identify with” (Yann Le Bossé).
The development of this power is, for the person being supported and all stakeholders, the possibility to regain freedom and movement. It is about power to act (not duty to act). In social work, the personal and collective strategic empowerment requires to, simultaneously, take into account both the structural and the personal dimensions of the desired change. All the actors have to also consider the context that is always moving, and act accordingly.
This approach feeds on several concepts and emerges from disciplines such as social psychology, sociology of organizations and systemic approach.
The personal and collective strategic empowerment of Yann Le Bossé guides the Philia+ project, its methodology and its results. You will find training contents about this approach in our pedagogical kit.
The Merging of knowledge and practice
The approach of merging of knowledge and practice helps the sharing of knowledge between different actors: people benefiting from social support, researchers, social workers… These different kind of knowledge (practical, professional, academic, scientific…) produce a new understanding of the situation and create innovative, inclusive and complete methodology of action.
This approach is used in education, in health… and in social work! The merging of knowledge and practice is applied in our collaborative action-research. The inclusion of all stakeholders and the sharing of their knowledges and practices.
"Merging of knowledge and practice” guidelines, ATD Quart-Monde (French, PDF)