Community change means addressing the root causes of problems that individuals and entire communities face that result from community and living conditions. It also means creating new systems or structures that enhance citizen participation and well-being, removing barriers to services and supports, and promoting social policies that enhance well-being and people's ability to thrive. The SPEC Team, now headquartered at the University of Miami, works primarily with human service agencies seeking to improve agency functioning to better achieve SPEC goals.
Human service agencies often have conflicting goals. Beyond simply helping community members who face distressing circumstances, many managers and staff began their careers motivated by social justice. Yet job demands and complex agency missions frequently lead to difficult balancing acts. Responding to urgent crises makes it hard to focus on preventing future problems; helping one person at a time deflects attention from improving community conditions for all.
SPEC staff help members of participant agencies better focus on both community well-being and worker satisfaction.
SPEC aims to shift the way human service agencies work!
General Overviews of SPEC in Action
2008 Newsletter (pdf viewable online)
2008 Presentation (Powerpoint viewable online)
University of Miami School of Education
This action research project will affect professionals, programs, and organizations, which, in turn, will affect the lives of children and families through program and policy changes. The project promotes of child and family well-being in the county by introducing professionals to an innovative model based on Strengths, Prevention, Empowerment and Community change (SPEC).Using the Learning and Changing by Doing (LCBD) approach, participants infuse their organizations with SPEC principles and document outcomes.
SPEC for Engaging Youth (SPEC-EY)
Agency Name University of Miami School of Education in partnership with Town Park Village Program Description
University of Miami School of Education in partnership with Town Park Village
Community Research and Action Program of Vanderbilt University, Nashville
New SPECs for Human Services
New SPECs was our initial human services project. See the 2005 Annual Report.
Bethlehem Centers of Nashville
Martha O’Bryan Center
United Neighborhood Health Service
United Way of Metropolitan Nashville