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Me and my community training module


This training module has been developed by the Inclusive Communication Trainers group, for use by others.

MS Word document
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If you use this module please adopt the 6 Communication Support Principles in the Talk for Scotland toolkit.

This training is a stand-alone session lasting 2-2½ hours, with two breaks.


For each activity we have given:

  • estimated time
  • summary of activity
  • resources required
  • facilitator’s notes where we thought it useful.

Downloadable resources and examples

These are in the files marked Exercise 2, 3, 5, 6, 7.

Additional useful resources

Talk for Scotland toolkit


This site has useful resources and information. It is a good contact for people who want to find out more about politics in a ‘user friendly’ way

Picture Communication Symbols (PCS)
Available from: www.widgit.com

Me and my community programme


To help people recognise that ‘politics’ are of relevance to everyone and have an impact on our daily lives.


To consider how our everyday activities are influenced by the decisions of others.

Exercise 1: Who's who (5 minutes) Clock


To get people to introduce themselves.

Summary of activity

  • people say who they are
  • name badges/cards are placed in front of participants
  • people can point at their name badge/card with trainer (or support worker) reinforcing their name.


  • Name badges or coloured card. Place names in front of participants.

Facilitator’s note

Keep this as brief as possible. The intention is just to get people to say who they are.

Exercise 2: Ice breaker/introduction (15 minutes)

In my community there is ........


To get people to identify amenities (things/services) in their community.

Summary of activity

People are invited to identify amenities by:

  • choosing a picture from those supplied by the trainer
  • drawing a picture of their own
  • writing the word down
  • telling the trainer/support worker.

Part of this activity is to get everyone to discuss with each other the different amenities that are in their communities. Later on we look at who decides who is ‘in charge of’ these things/services and how we may influence them.


  • Flip chart paper, pens, masking tape/Blu Tack
  • Photographs/drawings/clip art of typical community things/services. It is important that these are as relevant to the group you are working with as possible.
  • Downloadable resource: In my community there is...
  • Downloadable resource: sample pictures
  • Downloadable examples: completed sheets

Facilitator’s note

This activity can be done individually (using In my community ... sheets) or as a group (using flip chart pinned up on the wall). If you are working with an existing group you can be imaginative in gathering pictures of local amenities. For example by giving participants disposable digital cameras and getting them to take their own pictures.

Exercise 3: How does politics affect me? (10 minutes)


To establish a baseline of how people think politics affects them.

Summary of activity

Using 'Politics affects me scale', invite people to put their name on the sheet and put a tick/mark in the top row. Offer assistance to complete.


  • Downloadable resource: Politics affects me scale

Facilitator’s note

Try not to get into too much discussion on the meaning of ‘politics’ at this stage.

Exercise 4: Why we are here today (5 minutes)


To say why we are here today.

Summary of activity

Put up programme and explain you will cover three things:

  • A day in my life.
  • Who does what in my community?
  • Who do I contact?


  • Flip chart with timed programme (including break)
  • Flip chart showing three things to be covered

Exercise 5:  A day in my life - time line (25 minutes)


To identify key activities that people do regularly.

Summary of activity

  • Get participants to identify three things that they would normally use/do in any given day.

  • Get them to figure out how they would feel if they couldn’t use/do the particular activities.

  • If they are not personally affected, get them to identify how others may feel.

  • Introduce a sheet with the day broken into three sections i.e. morning/midday/night-time.

  • Supply a range of photographs/clip art of everyday activities.
  • Ask each individual to build up a day in their life by choosing one activity they carry out in each of the three sections of the day.


  • Pictures including personal routines, family life, transport , social life, leisure activities, environment, local amenities, food and drink, housework, children, family. Pictures should reflect local needs.
  • Blank paper/card/post-it notes for additional activities to be drawn.
  • Downloadable resource: A day in my life timeline
  • Downloadable resource: sample pictures (see Exercise 2)

Facilitator’s note

This activity can be done individually or as a group. How you do it will depend upon the training venue and/or needs of participants. If you are doing it as a group you can have the sheet broken into three sections on the table or up on the wall.

Exercise 6 :  Impact/feelings.  Look at three things in detail  (35 minutes)


To consider the influence/impact of politics on everyday activities.

Summary of activity

  • Pick three pictures (or invite participants to choose three pictures)
  • Offer participants a variety of ways to respond, e.g. verbally, drawing their own picture, choosing pictures.

For example:

Picture 1 brushing your teeth

Ask the questions:

  • What would stop you doing this?
  • What would be the impact of not being able to do it?
  • Would you be affected and how would others be affected?

Open or closed questions to be asked.

A range of possible answers can be given.

Picture 2 rubbish collection

Ask the questions:

  • What would be the impact of not having rubbish picked up?
  • Who else could be affected?

Answers to be given:

  • Verbally
  • By writing or drawing the answer
  • By using Fuzzy felt picture 

Picture 3 public transport

Ask the question:

  • What would be the impact of not being able to take public transport?


  • Participants to choose/identify two statements/pictures which show the most significant impact of them not being able to access public transport.


  • Pictures/clip art of regular activities (as previous activity)
  • Art materials (e.g. Fuzzy felt/modeling clay)/flip chart/pens
  • Downloadable resource: Impact feelings cards

Facilitator’s note

If time is short pick three particular activities (as per the worked examples above and on the handouts) in order to demonstrate the impact on three everyday activities that most of the participants will use. By the end of this activity participants should be able to begin to see how politics does affect them.

Exercise 7: What can you do about it? (30 minutes)


To get people to think about which ‘political’ structure they might go to if something is ‘not working’ in their community.

Summary of activity

  • Identify one (or two if time permits) of the activities/actions on the time line (from Exercise 5) that would bother people the most if it wasn’t working.
  • Break into pairs/small groups to discuss:

- Who would you contact to highlight the problem?

- How would you contact them?

- What are the key points that you would raise?

  • Ask pairs/small groups to complete the handout 'What I do and who decides.'


  • Pictures - local government, Scottish Government, UK Government, NHS, other agencies.
  • Downloadable resource: Every day events
  • Downloadable resource: What I do and who decides

Facilitator’s note

It’s useful to know which geographical area the participants are coming from. Then you can do some basic research into who they might contact within for example their local authority.

Sum up


To highlight the fact that ‘politics’ affects everyone

To identify whether there is interest in a more detailed session about how to influence decision making in my community.



To identify whether there is increased awareness of how 'politics' affects me.

Summary of activity

Hand out ‘Politics affects me scale' completed at the beginning.

Ask participants to complete bottom line – offer assistance if required.

Discuss results.


Downloadable resource: Politics affects me scale (see Exercise 3)


Downloadable resources and examples

Note: The resources listed above are all in Microsoft Word format. If you require these in an alternative format please contact us.