Skip to main content

About this free course

Become an OU student

Download this course

Share this free course

Introducing the voluntary sector
Introducing the voluntary sector

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

4 Empowering service users

Note pinned to cork board reads: Now it’s your turn!
Figure 5 Handing over power

If we accept the premise that empowerment is ‘a good thing’ and that empowering service users can improve quality of life for service users and add value to an organisation, then it is important to think about how organisations can engage with the process. Clearly, empowerment should not be perceived as a process that is top-down – that is, a method is decided by the organisation and then imposed on service users. It should be regarded as two-way, participative, nurturing and ‘co-produced’: empowerment is not something that is ‘done’ to people.