I’ve been reading a lot recently about the ‘cycle of momentum.’ It’s the idea that social movements grow in waves in a three step process that cycles and repeats: Act-Recruit-Train.
Moments like Friday’s Climate Strike are big moments of action, where the spotlight is on us and tons of new people are getting interested in the movement. One purpose of mass action like this is to put pressure on our politicians to meet our demands. But another purpose is to use the excitement of mass action to recruit lots of new people to the movement.
Once those people are recruited, we need to absorb them into the movement and give them the training opportunities so that they can thrive as activists. That’s how we build up momentum for the next wave of action, where we can recruit even more people into the movement, and the cycle continues.
You can get build your movement skills this June, when I’m putting on 4 trainings: People Power 101; Climate Justice 101; Having Climate Conversations; Finding your Place in the Movement – register and more info here.
But today I’m focusing on the recruit part of the ‘cycle of momentum.’
Introducing our brand new recruiting tool: the Pledge of Action!
It’s a simple tool, really. We’re just asking folks what types of action they want to take, and how they want to be contacted about it. It’s useful for us (a list of 100 people excited about phonebanking can be more useful than a list of 6,000 people who mostly are not excited about phonebanking), and it’s useful to you (if you only want to be texted about kayaktivism actions, and nothing else, you can choose that!).
Here are the actions in the pledge:
- Protesting in-person – to rallies, marches, picket lines…
- At home actions – signing petitions, calling your reps, writing letters to the editor…
- Phonebanking – at group phonebanks with pizza, or do at home yourself
- Outreach – tabling, flyering, doorknocking, talking to your neighbors…
- Kayaktivism – doing actions on the river
- Join a team and become an organizer – a consistent volunteer role, 2-10 hours/week, working on campaign strategy, planning actions, managing volunteers, etc.
- Join the community – we go to the pub, have potlucks, hikes, poetry nights, talk about big ideas, process climate emotions together, both in-person and online
- Take a Nonviolent Direct Action training
And you can choose whether you want to be emailed, texted, or join our new (and not yet launched) 350PDX Slack workspace.
So please go ahead and take the Pledge of Action and forward this email to folks who are interested in taking climate action, but not might not necessarily be interested in joining the general 350PDX mailing list.