Getting Ahead is a program that brings people who are under-resourced together to examine the impact poverty has on the community, as well as, how poverty affects individuals personally.
Individual “investigators” come together once a week to develop resources, create personal plans, (using the S.M.A.R.T goal formula) and work towards developing their social capital and building resources.
This work is done using a workbook book called “Getting Ahead in a Just Getting by World” by Phil Duval and through intense and enlightening conversation with the co-investigator/facilitator and others in the workshop. The Getting Ahead model uses 50% bookwork activities and 50% of sharing stories, giving feedback and expressing ideas with other investigators. The model is a peer learning process where everyone is a teacher and the co-investigator / facilitator is only there to guide the group through the process.
This is an empowerment model, looking at the strength of people who are under-resourced and building on those strengths. Although much of the work in the Getting Ahead workshops are about the individual, there are three other areas identified as the cause of poverty: Lack of Community Supports due to absence of Human and Social Capital, Exploitation and Unjust Political/ Economics. The investigators examines these other areas to understand the many reasons one may be in poverty. The last component is preparing the investigators to become community activists and to advocate and speak-out on these very important issues.