Community Development

Our Community Development program utilises an Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) approach to identify strengths in the community (skills, capability, passions and knowledge), supporting and guiding residents to deliver powerful and positive outcomes that are meaningful and long lasting.

Connecting Communities

Communities@Work’s Community Development team walks with the community – listening, participating, collaborating and uncovering opportunities for sustainable development. The rewards of strong and connected communities are apparent not only in the community, but are shared right throughout the Canberra region.

Communities@Work’s Community Development team works in partnership with residents, community organisations and businesses to:

  • Identify and understand community need through quantitative and qualitative research
  • Strengthen community by connecting people, organisations and businesses
  • Create networks and alliances to build collaborative partnerships
  • Develop community-driven projects that empower residents to participate in and co-design their community
  • Organise and promote activities/events for community to encourage their connection with, participation in and contribution to community life
  • Address issues to help reduce social isolation in community

If you would like to find out more, please contact us via our Get in Touch or call 6293 6597


In 2019, Communities@Work partnered with the Bank of I.D.E.A.S to deliver the popular and successful ‘Power to the People’ conference in Canberra, which brought together speakers and attendees from around Australia and internationally, to discuss building citizen-driven communities with an Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) approach. 

New & Emerging Communities

Canberra’s population surged past 420,000 in 2019 – the second fastest growth rate in Australia. This growth continues to drive development of new suburbs across the Canberra region. New and emerging communities often lack the support networks, community structures and resources and connection to their local community that established suburbs have.

Through a variety of initiatives, we support residents to connect and develop into strong, resilient communities with the foundations for growth in both economic and social capital.

We work closely with the ACT Government and other stakeholders, including the Suburban Land Agency, Mingle program and property developers. Initiatives such as Young at Heart (a social seniors club), Diwali, EidFest, Molonglo Valley Markets, Infusion (mobile morning tea), Book Club, Our Molonglo Valley community catch up, Garden Club, Play Street and Community Christmas Carols have enabled social connections and helped to build community networks and connections.


Community Development During COVID-19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Community Development team has adapted its practice to follow the health regulations while still ensuring continued support of the Canberra community; including the development of a range of initiatives and community resources.

The Community Development team is currently researching and engaging with the Canberra community to identify what they need as restrictions ease. The Community Development team will be ready to re-engage with a blend of face-to-face and online activities in community to develop and implement initiatives the community feels are important.

Denman Prospect

Communities@Work has been working with the Denman Prospect for several years, and in 2020 Communities@Work was formally contracted to provide Community Development services.

Usually done face-to-face, due to COVID-19, the practice of physical distancing means many in the community are living, schooling and working from home and using the digital world to replace activities that usually would have been done in person. New approaches to Community Development have been necessary.

“We’ve adapted and innovated our normal community development practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. While we’re no longer able to interact in person, we’re working online, which has created new opportunities for us to connect.”

Karen Jesson, Communities@Work Community Development Manager

About Denman Prospect

Located between Mount Stromlo and the National Arboretum, Denman Prospect is located in Canberra’s newest region, Molonglo Valley. The suburb is being developed by Capital Estate Developments, a subsidiary of Capital Property Group, which also developed and owns the Canberra Airport precinct.

Stage 1 and the first part of Stage 2 have been completed, with approximately 1,000 people already living there. Construction of the next part of Stage 2 is due to commence in the second half of 2020. When completed, Denman Prospect will have approximately 4,000 dwellings for more than 10,000 people.

Denman Prospect has exceptional public amenities and a P-10 government school is currently under construction, with the primary school schedule to open in February 2021 and the high school is  due to for completion in 2023.

Denman prospect

To find out what’s happening in Denman Prospect, you can follow them on Facebook or visit their website.

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