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Articles

A number of African American students sit along a lunch counter.

Lessons from the Greensboro Student Sit-ins

The Greensboro student sit-ins had nonviolence at their heart and succeeded, not only in their immediate goal, but also in building a lasting organisation in the SNCC. It stands now as yet another example of the successful use of nonviolence to stand against oppression.

Photograph of a group of people having a meeting.

On Conflict and Consensus

Making collective decisions and navigating conflict and are core activist skills. Conflict is usually viewed as an impediment to reaching agreements and disruptive to peaceful relationships. However, it is the underlying thesis of Consensus that nonviolent conflict is necessary and desirable.

Close up photo of three hands holding small autumn leaves.

Group Strategies to Prevent Stress and Burnout

A group’s culture can have a big impact on the likelihood of stress and burnout for members and staff. It’s possible to create a group culture that supports self-care, balance and sustainable work loads and patterns.

Two transmasculine people sitting together and having a serious conversation

Giving and Receiving Feedback

‘Feedback’ is a communication to a person or a group which gives that person information  about how they affect others. It is important to be able to give feedback in such a way that people can hear it, take it in, evaluate it, and change behaviour which affects their relationship with others.

A genderqueer person sitting on a therapist's couch, listening

Active Listening

Active listening is a fundamental skill for peacebuilding and social change. It is more than hearing, it involves processing what has been heard and skilfully selecting a response. Active listening serves to encourage the person to tell more and most importantly, communicates to the person that you are interested and listening.

A graphic of a hand grasped around money raised in the air

Tips for Fundraising

We’ve gathered together tips on building a donor base, running successful crowdfunding campaigns, and where to access more resources on effective fundraising for social justice causes.

A group of people gathered to protest the proposed development at James Price Point

What makes Non Violent Direct Action (NVDA) effective?

Nonviolent direct action can play a powerful role in campaigns. This article summarises some of the characteristics that can make NVDA either effective or ineffective, and encourages the use of clear tactics criteria in developing campaign strategy.

Photograph of the first General Assembly of Occupy Melbourne, October 15 2011. A large gathering of people in City Square with signs.

Facilitation at Occupy Melbourne

Insights about facilitation from the very challenging General Assembly process at Occupy Melbourne. This article will be of interest to facilitators and others learning about group process, as well as people keen to find out about the Occupy movement. These reflections were written two weeks after Occupy Melbourne kicked off in October 2011. 

Three people sit wearing balaclavas.

The Radical History of Unemployed Activism

Insights from the history of unemployed activism. Includes an overview of the history of Australia’s welfare system and stories from the 1920s, 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s – plus creative, humorous and confrontational tactics.

The silhouette of a person standing by a lake at sunset. The trees on the other side of the lake are reflected in the water, and the overall effect is calm but a bit lonely.

Hey Activists, R U OK?

The annual R U OK Day aims to prevent suicide by building connection. This articles looks at what individuals and groups engaged in social change can do to connect with and look out for others.

An open notebook in which a hand is writing a list of tasks, ready to be ticked off. The text is too indistinct to read.

Setting goals and changing habits

Setting a life up to sustain activism doesn’t always come easy. Just like in a campaign we’re much more likely to get where we want to go if we’re clear about the intended destination – and if we take effective steps in that direction. These tips are provided to help you reach your healthy goals.

A cup of black tea on a table, shot from above

Coming down from stress

To be fresh and ready for the challenges of social change we also need quality time off. Here are some tips for getting the  most out of a break, whether a longer holiday, weekends or any captured moment for potential relaxation.

Arial view of a road through a forrest. The road curls back on itself, changing directly completely.

Hope and Activist Burnout

Experiencing defeats contributes to many people losing hope, burning out, or just dropping out of activism. If we can set up our organisations and social movements to function effectively we’re more likely to foster hope and keep engaged and emotionally strong activists.

Close up of the head and shoulders of a movable artist's model, made out of wood

Ideas for Embodied Activism

Overwhelming events happen and depending on our degree of privilege, daily stressors can be constant. Unless we are in crisis and/or an immediate life threatening situation it’s incredibly beneficial to spend time cultivating resources which support your health, embodiment, connectedness and feelings goodness.

A large group of women sit in a room talking animatedly.

Consciousness Raising

Consciousness raising was a key element of the second wave women’s movement enabling women to recognise that the personal is political. This article gives an overview of group consciousness raising processes relevant for any group based on a shared identity or experience of oppression.

A form with a table with two columns and 5 rows titled 'Reviewing the Activist Year (Make a copy of this sheet and fill it in)'.

Reviewing your Activist Year

Why not take some time out to reflect on the year that was, before jumping in to plans for the next? Different approaches to reflection are explored including journalling, art and ritual. Plus there’s a handy worksheet which you can use (at any time of the year).

Two transmasculine people sitting together and having a serious conversation

Organise Yourself Healthy

Community organisers (and other change agents) have some excellent tools that can maximise the likelihood of making healthy goals a reality. This article will tune up your organising smarts as well as your health and wellbeing.

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