This article is extracted from a report outlining the experiences of a partnership between the 'People's Dialogue', a national network linking representatives from illegal and informal settlements in South Africa, and a group of three organisations in India. These are SPARC, an NGO working broadly in the area of housing and community development; the National Slum Dwellers Federation; and Mahila Milan, a federation of women's collectives. The article describes several of the participatory methods and techniques which are used in community-based shelter training programmes, and explains why the training process is important to community development. It argues that experiential learning is a more useful approach than those offered by conventional training.
Likely to be of interest to community development workers, particularly those involved in housing issues.