Values & Principles

Values and Principles

We believe in communities. We recognize that community members are their own best experts, and that with sufficient supports and resources, communities can achieve their goals. We see our role as providing the needed supports to facilitate the use of the skills, talents, and resources inherent in the community to address community concerns.

In our work, we value:

  • Community knowledge, experiences and stories.
  • Combining this community wisdom with other kinds of research information.
  • Working together to make decisions.
  • Flexibility.
  • Creativity.
  • Learning through experience.
  • Meeting new people.
  • Enjoying our time working together.

We work from a population health approach, and have adopted the population health principles outlined by the Public Health Agency of Canada.

In our work we:

  • Focus on the health of populations.
  • Address the broad factors that impact people's health.
  • Base decisions on research information (which we define as data, evidence and community input).
  • Invest in making and keeping people and communities well.
  • Use multiple strategies to address community health and well-being.
  • Facilitate and encourage collaboration and joint responsibility and ownership for community health across sectors.
  • Foster accountability for outcomes based on comprehensive evaluation.
  • Engage community members in working for the community's health.


Community Development

Horizons has adopted the International Association of Community Developmentā€™s definition of Community Development as follows:

Community development promotes participative democracy, sustainable development, rights, economic opportunity, equality and social justice, and ecological justice, through the organisation, education and empowerment of people within their communities, whether these be of locality, identity or interest, in urban and rural settings.


Standards for Community Engagement

We endorse the Scottish National Standards for Community Engagement. They are:

  • Inclusion - We will identify and involve the people and organizations that are affected by the focus of the engagement.
  • Support - We will identify and overcome any barriers to participation.
  • Planning - There is a clear purpose for the engagement, which is based on a shared understanding of community needs and ambitions.
  • Working Together - We will work effectively together to achieve the aims of the engagement.
  • Methods - We will use methods of engagement that are fit for purpose.
  • Communication - We will communicate clearly and regularly with the people, organizations and communities affected by the engagement.
  • Impact - We will assess the impact of the engagement and use what has been learned to improve our future community engagement.

National Standards for Community Engagement