"Use Your Voice: Change Your World" is a fast paced, interactive workshop developed in Fall 2011 by a team of Fredericksburg Chapter Virginia Organizing members.
In an hour or less, the workshop offer participants information, tools, and a boost in confidence so they may more effectively share their viewpoints with public officials at the local, state, and national levels.
The materials and ideas presented address common concerns about speaking out. What's the best way to contact my elected official? Should I send email? A letter? What should I say? What do I do if s/he just won't listen?
The workshop is non-partisan and suitable for the general public, for community organizations, and as a refresher course or training for local chapters.
The Fredericksburg Chapter envisioned the workshop as a means of raising awareness of Virginia Organizing in our community, of recruiting new members, and as a resource to be shared with other chapters.
The presentation may be made with a computer, projector, and PowerPoint. Or it may be done simply with a flip chart and markers.
Tools for the workshop are available for downloading here on the Virginia Organizing website. Files include a customizable PowerPoint to show in the workshop and/or to use as a script for presenters. Notes on the PowerPoint guide speakers with suggested wording and timing to make sure that there is plenty of opportunity for participants to practice their new skills.
Word file handouts include addresses for Web resources; a versatile effective message structure that may be used in writing to or speaking with government representatives; tips for getting back on track and not letting officials hijack the conversation; and a comparison the impact of email, snail mail, and phone calls.
If you have questions about the workshop and its use in your community, please feel free to contact Fredericksburg Chapter member Charlotte Johnson Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org.