Published on August 4, 2009
Purpose and Community
What is Advocacy? Speaking on behalf of yourself and others Supporting rights Solving problems Writing letters Bringing people together Always learning Sharing power
Why Be An Advocate? To “Pay Forward” to your Community To fight stereotypes and lack of access To empower others To develop your self To build a career To build a community of activists To build choice for all
What is Your Community? It is the place and people where you feel like you belong Community is based on mutual trust and respect If a vital community is a fast flowing river, the rain that keeps it flowing is shared “stories” Out of stories, a community creates its culture, its rituals, its beliefs
Purpose Grows from Community Every Advocate has a purpose or a goal The purpose guides how you help others and what you fight for If you want to be an effective advocate, your purpose should grow from your community It should reflect your community’s needs and dreams
Your Support Network (SN) You need a SN to develop skills and focus on purpose Your SN should be a group of people who share your purpose Your SN will help you understand your community’s needs Your SN will help you develop change activities that support your purpose Your SN will guide you through failure and celebrate your success
Build Your SN Find members of your community who are dissatisfied with the place of the community in the larger society locally, regionally, whatever Start and continue sharing stories in a community comfortable place about the dissatisfaction until some agreement on a goal is reached Use that agreement to plan an action Stick with an easy win Use the easy win to find more members of your SN And so on
How to Plan Start with how you’d like things to be (outcome) Step back from the Outcome by asking “What would we need to get there?” Keep stepping back to where you are now Execute! If your outcome is too big, you’ll see that as you try to step back If you get stuck, stop planning for a week and come back to it
Keep the SN Together Your community has more to do than your purpose Keep your community together by sharing more than an advocate’s purpose Do projects for each other Support other people’s work Have fun!
Advocacy and Community The community is bigger than your advocacy Let the community tell you where your advocacy should go If your community resists your advocacy, take the time to figure out why Change your advocacy to fit your community’s journey
The Advocate’s Role As an advocate, you are a steward of your community’s assets (people, skills, history, money) A steward preserves and expands assets, and does not waste them Assets belong to the community, not to you An advocate must make moral decisions in advocacy actions, no matter how “bad” the target of an action might be
Soul Resources Civic Link at http://bit.ly/IlCgd How to Change the World at http://bit.ly/W9T94 Creating Community Books on Amazon at http://bit.ly/zeGBZ Transformational Leadership at http://bit.ly/150ayc
Web Resources National Consortium on Leadership and Disability for Youth at http://www.ncld-youth.info/ Community Organizing Links at http://bit.ly/E6R8S Leadership and Disability at http://bit.ly/ON22O Disaboom at http://www.disaboom.com/
My Resources My Twitter Account: mdrcngd My Blogs: The Recovering Life LTC Reform Communities of Power Universal Education MDRC Website: http://www.copower.org/ Linkedin Profile: http://bit.ly/s1mS Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Download This Presentation: Comment on this Presentation
Final Thoughts "Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?”- Abraham Lincoln " … Each human being has value as a human being; ... we're all interdependent; the idea that we can change the world, and the first step is to change ourselves." -Dr. Burton Blatt "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.“ -Martin Luther King Jr.
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