A community-based service is one that aims to mitigate a community shortage, and the community has an influence on it, may identify with it emotionally and can regard it their own.
During a community developing process new service requirements typically arise, while existing ones gain a new profile as a result of the explored needs and capacities.
Community development is based on involvement, activation, encouragement of participation, enhanced active participation of the community and a strengthening of its organization. The communal nature of the services means that former subordinations and behavioural patterns, whereby those receiving the services have a submissive and passive role of recipient, are broken. One needs to be guided by mutuality and equality, providing for involvement and contribution to make sure that individuals may become valuable for their community.
It is vital that community-based services are available locally, to give meaningful responses to real needs, to provide space for volunteering, to make efforts to extend the group of those interested, to build on local resources, to provide a space for the community to show solidarity and belonging, or to make it the community’s own initiative.
Local community activities require local community spaces, and provide complex solutions for a wide range of needs of the target groups. Apart from qualified professionals, capable laypersons will also be involved, requiring learning opportunities and mentoring.