Stages of Community Readiness

Like individuals, communities move through different stages of readiness to adopt a change. Understanding where your tribe is now can help you move your community to the next stage and beyond. Before you begin planning an activity, consider your community readiness level. Your efforts will make more of an impact when matched to your tribe’s readiness!

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Stages of Readiness
No Awareness

Community members don’t recognize the issue as a problem. Or it may not really be an issue.


Some community members recognize it as a concern. But there’s little recognition that it’s happening locally.

Vague Awareness

Most community members feel there’s a local concern. But there’s no immediate motivation to do anything about it.


Community members recognize something must be done. There may even be a group addressing it. But efforts aren’t focused or detailed.


Some active community leaders start to plan in earnest. The community modestly supports their efforts.


There is enough information to justify efforts. Activities are underway.                  


Administrators or community decision-makers support activities. Staff begin to train and get experience.

Confirmation/ Expansion

Efforts are in place. Members feel comfortable using services, and they support expansions. Local data are regularly obtained.

Community Ownership

Detailed and sophisticated knowledge exists about prevalence, causes, and consequences. Effective evaluation guides new directions.

Click on the next section to find out what might affect your community’s readiness for change.