One of the many forms of social activism. The community organizer is never seen, but always felt, as I shall explain in a moment. The basic task of a community organizer is to empower people who normally wouldn't be able to speak for themselves to do so, while not speaking for those people.

Community organizing is similar to other forms of social activism, but there are some key differences as well. Social work and community organizng have theur parallels; they are both intended to give aid to those who really need it. However, often times the needy become dependant on the social worker, whereas the ultimate goal of the community organizer is to make it so that the intended party no longer needs the organizer. It is similar to lobbying as well - both try to speak up for those who need to be spoken up for. However, in lobbying the lobbyist often speaks for the party, while in community organizing the organizer tries to get the party to speak for themselves. Thus is the place of community organizing.

Community organizing is tricky work - often times organizers step over their bounds, and this can lead to trouble. There is no bright line when it comes right down to it, but there are definitely things an organizer should not do and they include:

  • speaking for the organized without permission to do so
  • Getting involved unobjectively in internal struggles among the organized
  • Telling the organized what's best for them
  • Becoming the leader of any group formed by the organized
There are many more examples and it does indeed get a deal mroe tricky than that, but suffice it to say there are certain bounds an organizer must not cross.

In summation, the community organizer's intentions are usually noble it is very difficult not to become to involved. Often times community organizers are very fiery people, but they must constantly remind them that they should never be the spearhead of any movement - those who they organize should. The foundation of community organizing is that people whould be able to speak for themselves, and if they have a hard time doing so, they should be taught to, and that is just the purpose of the community organizers. For the ultimate goal of the organizer is for him to longer have any work left to do.