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7. A Systems Approach to Ending Homelessness

Humanities/Social Sciences

Thematic Area
Community Development

This video has been produced by Bridgeway Partners and deals with local efforts (Calhoun County, Michigan U.S) to eradicate homelessness. A homeless coalition had been running for 10 years without much success. Their efforts failed as a result of disagreements, competition and lack of knowledge.
Bridgeway partners intervened and applied a systems thinking approach to community building which involved rallying political and business leaders, service providers and involved homeless people with the aim of producing a better plan.
As the lesson progresses, the speaker utilises the powerpoint slides to demonstrate the implementation of systems thinking including pitfalls and methods for reimagining system links.

Points of Strength
The presentation is direct and clear. Here, a real-world example (case study) of successful systems approach to a social issue is used as a teaching tool. The progression of the slides offers opportunity for students to engage. The graphics presented are useful and could be reimagined for a different purpose in systems thinking in community development.