This paper describes the process and outcome of a self-help group involving six parents, and then proceeds to analyse the self-help group as a polity.
This analysis of the self-help group incorporates the notion of the parents as citizens who act and make decisions as a group or social polity. Concepts of generalised exchange and justice which have integral roles in social action within a polity are applied within the analysis.
These concepts are used to explain the personal growth of parents as citizens demonstrated through their participation in the self-help group as a social polity and in their social functioning within the community.
The paper argues that by promoting the clients’ citizenship development, the process facilitates their participation within the community and contributes to improved social functioning and self-determination.