context matters more than content;
process more than program."
Bonnie Benard 
Traditional social service programs seek to identify and rectify recipients’ incapacities and then to anticipate and avoid problems or alleviate risk.
But problem-free ≠ fully prepared.
With service "providers" focusing on the former and "consumers" on the latter side of this equation, both usually view each other as adversaries rather than as allies – and rarely as equal partners – in the process.
A diametrically different approach is fostered by the asset or strength-based Resiliency Model, which attends to “…the building of one’s ability to bounce back.” This model emerged from the youth development movement of the 1980’s and 1990’s after evaluation researchers confounded traditional intervention strategists’ “… core belief that risk factors for the most part predict negative outcomes …”; to the contrary, researchers discovered “… supports and opportunities which buffer the effect of adversity and enable development to proceed appear to predict positive outcomes in anywhere from 50 to 80 percent of high-risk populations.”
This makes "risk" not only a poor diagnostic tool, but also one that shifts attention away from ingredients that constitute our recipe for success.
National resiliency evaluation expert Bonnie Benard cites volumes of research showing that effective organizations treat their "clients" as constituents who are extended ongoing opportunities to:
1) Build their competencies and skills through engaging, challenging and interesting activities;
2) Build belonging through active participation in group processes with peers;
3) Develop a sense of power and respect through problem-solving and decision-making; and
4) Find a sense of meaning through activities that incorporate dialogue and reflection while
providing community service and contribution to others.
In such situations, success comes not from solutions externally imposed; rather, “…the action is in the interaction…”, stimulating an ‘alchemy of belonging’ that has the following properties:
> Leadership is in the convening, not in demanding or directing;
> Small groups are the unit of transformation, not one-to-one or large classroom settings;
> Questions are the only things to be ‘provided’ and are more transformative than answers;
> Hospitality - the welcoming of strangers – is not just an action, but an attitude; and
> Physical space social interactions are designed to nurture a sense of belonging. 
These characteristics completely contradict the traditional provider/consumer service delivery model and conventional authoritarian hierarchal structure that supports it. Together, that model and structure combine to impose a teacher/student – or, worse, a parent/child – dynamic. Such approaches treat people as recipients rather than participants; in grammatical terms, they become passive objects rather than instigating subjects of action intended for their benefit.
It is such approaches that make self-fulfilling the misperception that these are hapless/helpless/hopeless people who require not just guidance but direction. If so-called "recipients" respond to condescending attitudes and action with resentment, the traditional response is more punitive measures in an escalating repression/resistence cycle.
The unintended consequence is reinforcement of the very co-dependence from which they - and we - seek liberation. As Bonnie Benard notes:
"(Resiliency) is something that everyone has within them, regardless of
whatever horrors they have experienced in their lives ... It's up to the
rest of us to create the school, the community, the environment to allow
them to succeed. Unlike most rehabilitation programs, which zero in
on people's problems, resiliency focuses on finding hidden strengths
and assets and using them to evoke change.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
 Benard, Bonnie - “From Risk to Resiliency: What Schools Can Do”, Improving Prevention Effectiveness edited by William B. Hansen, Steven M. Giles & Melodie D. Fearnow-Kenney (2000)
 Center for Youth Development and Policy Research
 Hiebert, Bryan - Creating Communities of Resiliency - Presentation:Centre for Leadership in Learning - 24
 Benard, Bonnie - - Resiliency: What We Have Learned (2004) 8
 Benard - ibid.102, citing several research studies
 Jackson, Paul & McKergow, Mark – The Solutions Focus (2008) 42
 Block, Community: The Structure of Belonging (2008) 83-84, citing the work of Christopher Alexander
 Huber, Cynthia - Sacramento Bee (10/29/08)