On the Ground
The Scottish Community Alliance operates in two main areas: promoting the activities of local people on the ground and facilitating a national policy dialogue. The shape of this website, with its two distinct themes, reflects our dual objectives. This `On the Ground` section covers the wide range of activities carried out by what we refer to as the `Community Sector`. While the community sector does include some large organisations, we use the term to mean: "those organisations active on a local or community level, usually small, modestly funded and largely dependent on voluntary, rather than paid, effort." The Alliance contends that the concerns and the needs of the small local groups are quite different from those of the larger, professionally staffed agencies which characterise large parts of the voluntary sector. We further hold that it is these local services which reach our neediest citizens and that this is work is not sufficiently known or appreciated.
The momentum of our campaign is set by regular e-mail briefings - Local People Leading - which offer our supporters an account of what's going on in communities across Scotland. Much of our news is provided by the range of community networks which support us and whose members are local community groups. The overarching objective which informs our priorities is that of community empowerment and for this reason we focus our coverage on a concept which is relatively new to Scotland - `Community Anchor Organisations`. This concept is outlined in more detail within this section.