Australian Progress hosted the FWD+Organise 2019 conference in Sydney, 5-6 December 2019. The conference was attended by 300 of Australia’s leading grassroots, industrial and community organisers as well as digital advocates, campaigners and activists from organisations representing all sectors. The conference featured 70 speakers running more than 30 sessions.
The conference took place against the eery backdrop of record air pollution from bush fires, bringing the climate crisis front of mind. Decolonisation was also strongly on the agenda with powerful First Nations presenters and case studies.
Here is a taste of FWD+Organise 2019 – a combination of presentations and articles and related resources from the conference. Click on the titles to visit each post.
Laura O’Connell Rapira from ActionStation (Aotearoa New Zealand) provided a keynote presentation on ‘The Role of Digital in Supporting Indigenous-Led Change’. During the keynote she spoke about something that caught the attention and imagination of many in the crowd: how ActionStation shifted from ‘member-based’ to ‘values-led’. This article provides more details about the process.
Alexandra Flores-Quilty (USA) is a trainer with the Momentum training institute and cofounder of By The People, a movement to impeach President Trump which is turning out people at regular mass actions around the US. During her keynote speech on ‘Using Civil Resistance to Build Movements for Change’ she referred to the Momentum organising cycle. You can find out more via these webinars.
Lee Cheuk-yan (General Secretary of Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions) and Amanda Tattersall (ChangeMakers podcast) presented on the democracy demonstrations which have turned out almost two million people. The keynote included insights into the history of the umbrella movement and the strategies and tactics used to mobilise close to a third of the entire population of Hong Kong. For more on this topic see this collection of ChangeMakers podscasts and articles.
Laura O’Connell Rapira from ActionStation (Aotearoa New Zealand) ran a workshop on how their organisation worked with volunteers to tackle the trolls behind online racist hate. This article outlines the key principles and steps in the Tauiwi Tautoko program.
Barnstorms are campaign events that engage, recruit and rapidly move supporters into action. A workshop was held with representatives from four Australian organisations (Australian Conservation Foundation, GetUp!, Asylum Seeker Resource Centre and Victorian Trades Hall Council) who shared their experiences of using the barnstorming tool. Those experiences, lessons and tips are summarised in this article.
The ‘How to Organise a Webinar for Thousands’ workshop shared tips for using large scale conference calls and webinars to mobilise supporters and scale up action. Examples were shared by Jasmine Ruddy (Medicare for All – USA), Alexandra Flores-Quilty (By the People – USA) and Ella Shi (Climate Strike – Australia). Read the article.
Community Mapping enables people to gather accurate information about how a community operates in order to organise its members and pursue their interests. In this workshop case studies were shared by Larissa Baldwin about the Seed NT Fracking campaign and Kaz Uy about the Phillipines Ocean Action Resource Centre. This article includes an introduction to community mapping, key tips, case studies and a worksheet you can use to get started.
Digital Storytellers ran the ‘How to Make Video with your Mobile Phone’ workshop full of practical advice. This article covers what you need, shooting tips, cutaways and B-roll, and editing, along with the slides from the workshop and a handy downloadable guide.
Tom Maclachlan and Catherine Church from Good Chat ran a workshop that explored the top 5 Trends they see emerging in video. This article includes the full presentation slides, a useful checklist for your videos, and diagrams to understand how stories are changing.
Austin Phillips and Sofia Madden from Principle Co presented ‘The Top 5 Things You Need to Know About Graphic Design’ workshop. This article gathers tips, key questions to consider, and a checklist on creating your brand identity for a campaign/organisation.
This workshop shared tips on effective online fundraising, based on Raisely’s 2019 fundraising data and case studies from GetUp and ActionAid. Access the key insights and slides.
Glen Berman and Charlotte Bradley presented on the basics of Artificial Intelligence: the policy implications, opportunities and challenges AI presents for social justice campaigns. The slides includes explanations, case studies, scenarios, and ways forward.
Many thanks to the presenters who shared materials and feedback on articles. If you presented at FWD+Organise 2019 and would like to add to this collection, please get in touch. Thanks to regular contributor Joel Dignam for attending the conference and contributing articles along with Commons Librarians Antje Dun and Iain McIntyre.
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