disability service organisations ! An
alternative model ! Community
research ! Community
Each community has a particular role that fulfils a particular need.
Valued community roles provide a common cause or focus for the
community, as well as other communities that are a part of it.
Valued communities provide valued roles for their members.
Social role valorisation provides valued roles for ALL members of the
Communities that have valued roles in society …
... The spiritual community
... The family community
... The living community
... The recreational community
... The learning community
... The employment community
... The health community
... The internet community
... The blind community
... The disability community
Communities that have de-valued roles in society …
... The AIDS community
... The drugs / rave communities
... The criminal community
... The gay / lesbian communities
... The Muslim community
... The bikie community
... The street community
... The unemployment / homeless communities
... The aged community
... The single parent community
Communities are as varied and
individual as its members. The role of
the community provides the
members with a sense of belonging and purpose. Community roles
can be active in providing a
service, supportive, where
the members support the activities of another community, or a mixture
where the members share experiences,
resources, skills and knowledge with each other. Communities can be
recreational, and provide a social role
in enabling its members to
participate in various activities, or provide an educational role in
providing its members
with knowledge, skills and resources. A community could also be a
organisation, a local community group or
any service that supports people with high support needs (Characteristics of the service
), or fulfill
any other role that is valued in society
as well as other communities that it is a part of.
change the perspective from Society to Community we have a
better idea of what we are trying to achieve. Community is all about
valued relationships, about careing and shareing, about being with
others we love (Understanding
communities). SRV is all about providing those valued relationships
and support networks to disadvantaged people who have been
disenfranchised by society for various reasons. Valued relationships
transcend roles. Without others to share our feelings with, life
becomes meaningless. It does not matter how much money or possessions
we have, if we have no one to share it with, life becomes meaningless.
SRV is all about
building values and
communities. These communities may be a part of an organisation or
service provider, a family or club, or work, or school. By providing
valued roles for ALL members of each community that the person wishes
to participate in and is most appropriate for the person (Disability services role
models), the person is
more likely to have valued relationships within those communities.
Valued roles provide a common cause or
the community. The
members develop a sense of pride and purpose in being a part of the
community that bond and strengthen the community. The role
is valued in
a sense that it brings something to the wider community that it is a
part of, as well as the members of the community. Valued roles are also
about community leadership
that is intouch with the community and can create a feeling of
importance within the members.
... Community members that support
disadvantaged people in their community
are valued by those people, as well as the community that they are a
part of, Meals on Wheels etc. Members offer support and provide a
service in helping others in their community. I remember the LIONS club
was involved in supporting people in the community. It is possible for
community to institute this culture. We often see this happening
spontaneously in communities where a member is sick etc.
... Recreation communities are valued within the wider community in
providing a means for its members to participate in
activities, develop skills, share experiences and and friendships
within the activity.
... Supporters that support a sporting
are valued by the club and have a valued role
the club. The club
also has a valued role in the wider
... Volunteers that work for and support organisations are valued by
organisation and have a valued role
... Events such as 'Clean up Australia' provide a valued role for
communities and groups to clean up Australia.
There are lots of other examples of
communities and groups that have a
This can happen in any community where disadvantaged people can be
included in activities through various strategies.
By providing a valued role for a
education or employment) through some form of participation where a
person is included in the community (active role),
rather than the
current model (supportive role), the
learns new values and
skills in supporting people people with high support needs.
Minority communities generally have devalued roles in society. These
communities have a charecteristic, agenda or function that is not
representive of the society in which the community participates.
The value of those roles are influenced
number of factors:
... Government policy and Government roles
... the function of the community
within the community that it is a part of
... how the community sees itself
... how other communities see the community
... cultural factors
... learned behaviours
... available skills and resources
By providing valued roles
Where the community has:
... ownership of its members, where
members are a part of the community and connect with each other
... a sense of purpose, where all
members have a common cause that is
by the community
... a sense of self determination,
... valued social roles for its
... the skills and resources to provide
for the needs of its members
... the ability to share skills and
resources with other communities that it is a part of
The community has the opportunity to grow and prosper.
A valued community role:
We all play a role in each community we are a part of. A father in one
community may be a teacher, worker or a painter in another community.
The value of the person's role is determined by the expectations of the
community in the person fulfilling that role. Sometimes other roles are
assigned to members where they do not come up to those expectations of
the others in a community. They may have a particular characteristic
that is different to the
others, or need special support that is not
available within a community. If the person does not have something of
contribute to the community, that person will be treated as different
(asigned a devalued social role).
SRV (which itself evolved from the concept of Normalisation) is
probably the most influential social paradigm used to provide a better
life for people with disability. The idea of Normalisation (where all
members of society have the same right to a the same way of life as
others within that society) has been around for a long time. It has
only been in the last 10 to 20 years that we have had the incentives,
skills and resources to provide for a more humanistic approach to
meeting needs of disadvantaged people in society. SRV is about social
roles. Society tends to group people into different classifications or
groups according to a particular characteristic of a person that stands
out. Regardless of the persons individual differences. society
generally assigns a particular role to all people that share that
characteristic. This role describes the persons behaviours, and how we
should associate with the person. Roles are also a way to visualise the
person and what we may expect from the person. Some social roles are
positive. Hero, friend, supporter, defender of the faith, aussie
battler, statesman etc all create a positive image of the person.
Accordingly they are treated with respect and considerstion as valued
members of society. Whether they are good people or not, is not as
important as their social role. Other social roles are negative.
Druggie, criminal, nigger, deviant, sick, dole bludger, alcoholic etc
all create a negative picture or impression of the person, and as a
result, the person will be negitavely valued, and treated differently
to others, regardless of any other positive characteristicts the person
may have. SRV shows us that disadvantaged people were devalued by
society, and that by changing the way they are seen (their role), we
change our behaviours and expectations, and add value to their lives by
giving them the opportunity to participate in valued relationships and
activities. Person Centered Planning, the Least Restrictive Principle
and Transitional planning have all evolved from the principles of SRV.
Each model is designed to allow (or facilitate) positive behaviours and
attitudes within society, where the person to be able to participate,
as much as possible, within each community that most suits the person's
needs. These models of care could be thought of as the vechicle, SRV is
the engine that drives each model of care, and government policy and
practice serves as the highways and byways.
When providing the most appropriate care for people with high support
1) The community is not where the
person is living, but where the
person participates, shares experiences and has valued relationships
2) People with high support needs (severe disability, aged etc.)
will always need support structures as a part of their lives.
3) The amount of participation in a community (living, education,
employment or recreation) is directly related to the skills and
resources of the person, and, the skills and resources of the
community that the person wishes to participate in.
4) Institutions are going to be around in one form or another
whether we like it or not, It is the way that they are used that is the
5) The institutions of a society towards a particular group
determine the way the group participates in society.
6) The institutions of a particular government department,
profession or service define the way the person is supported within
7) Facilities that support people with high support needs do not
need to be the nursing homes or prisons in the
that they are today, but can become warm inviting community places that
offer a range of services to the community, as well as be a part of the
wider community within that society.
8) People with high support needs are a minority group in our
society, and will have the same problems as other minority groups in
being a part of society.