The purpose of this manual is to articulate the key elements and process for conducting a community assessment. It is intended to provide a framework and tools for actively learning about a community's needs and strengths and then setting priorities. The manual describes a community assessment process from beginning to end and should serve as a guide rather than a definitive model. A community assessment can take many forms and should be individualized based on the specific needs and resources in the community (Bruner et al., 1993). Community workers and their communities should modify, build upon and refine this model based on their reasons for undertaking an assessment; the availability of human and financial resources; and, the time line established for the completion of the assessment activities.
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