A Qualitative Evaluation to Examine the Impact of a Participatory Action Research Intervention in Mexico
thesisposted on 27.02.2015, 00:00 authored by Maria de Lourdes R. Arellano
Recently, community interventions have increased the use of strategies that emphasize community development involving capacity building, advocacy, social change, and empowerment. Although community interventions intend to ameliorate social and economic inequalities, there is a lack of research to evaluate the outcomes of Participatory Action Research (PAR). PAR approaches have demonstrated to be a helpful tool to address and identify community issues, weaknesses, and strengths. The PAR approach described in this case study of Juanacatlán Renace (Juanacatlán Reborn), provided a process for the community of Juanacatlán to come together and identify main issues, resources, and supports. The community members were actively involved in the analysis of contextual issues meaningful to them, and took actions to address some of their most pressing needs. This study collected qualitative data and was conducted with semi-structured interviews. The findings suggest multiple activities and organized actions that were taken at multiple levels in areas like health, social services, and education. This study discusses the potential implications of using PAR methodology as it was executed in the Juanacatlán Renace initiative. Participatory methodologies like the one described in this study provide opportunities to enhance community development through the implementation of services and development projects that are likely to have an impact on community members.