A guide from The Commons Social Change Library with collated resources to help groups work together better.
Use this Engagement Pyramid from the Mobilisation Lab to visualise the different ways a person might get involved with your campaign.
Change the world with boycotts, workplace action and memes, political campaigns, disaster relief, civil disobedience and more.
After a big year of effort it’s important to take time for reflection, evaluation, team-building, celebration, and planning. These resources will help.
Australian Progress has prepared this 40-point summary of Pastor Rick Warren’s bestselling book The Purpose Driven Church. The resource is based on Rick Warren’s experience of growing his church, Saddleback, from scratch to 20,000 members attending every week. Saddleback is now the eighth biggest church in the United States.
This handbook is a handy and unique resource for activists and community workers engaged in work for peace at a community level throughout Australia. It includes practical ways to intervene in violence, to transform conflict and to build peace.
Nothing precedes purpose. The starting point for every organisation or movement should be the question ‘Why do we exist’? A number of tips for focusing an organisation on vision and purpose. An excerpt from Purpose Driven Campaigning, based on Rick Warren’s Purpose Driven Church.
Rick Warren focuses on five ‘circles of commitment’ – community, crowd, congregation, committed and core, and argue that it’s important to recognise where your supporters fall in these categories, and develop processes to move them from the outside in. An excerpt from Purpose Driven Campaigning.
Affinity groups are a feature of many large scale non-violent actions. An affinity group is a small group of people (eg: 5-15) who have something in common who take action together. Groups could focus on a specific theme eg street medics or legal observers or more commonly it is a group of people that take action as a team.
A process guide to be used in training workshops, planning sessions and team building. Photolanguage has many uses, including to facilitate self-awareness; deepen engagement and relationships; stimulate connections between intellectual reflection and personal experience; and stimulate creativity in personal expression.
Games are great to use during a workshop. They may be scheduled into the workshop at various times or you may just toss one in when you feel that the group could benefit from playing a game. The games in this handout are separated into the categories of introductory games, name games, dynamicas (energisers) and fun ways to get people into groups.
Giving and receiving feedback is a core skill for people engaged in social change projects. These slides and related text outline what can maximise or minimise the effectiveness of feedback and useful phrases.
Joel Dignam reviews Jo Freeman’s “The Tyranny of Structurelessness” which explores some of the key structural problems facing groups. Recognising that power dynamics are present in all groups Freeman proposes formal structures, transparency and accountability.
Civic associations depend upon volunteers to get their work done. Joel Dignam distils insights from Ruth Wageman and Richard Hackman’s “Designing work for individuals and for groups” from Perspectives on Behavior in Organizations.
Joel Dignam reviews Marshall Ganz’ treatment of structure as a craft of organising. As Ganz notes “Developing leadership requires structuring the work of the organization so it affords as many people as possible the opportunity to learn to lead.”
Games are great for energising a group, lightening the mood, promoting playfulness, and building morale. This list is an excerpt from the Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacebuilding Trainers’ Manual which is also available for download on the Commons.
Group morale is a key contributor to the success of a group, increasing cohesion, reducing burnout and preventing activist turnover. Build team relationships; resolve conflicts and improve communication; and celebrate success.
‘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.
Activists are often so focused on problems – it’s important to take in wins, whether big or small, to sustain us through the struggle. This article includes reminders of what we can celebrate, how, and why it is so important.