Engaging members with Federation, increasing association participation and campaigning is the holy grail of organising.
Acknowledging that members already have a full time job is the first important step, making members feel welcomed and valued at the association meeting and establishing relationships both within the association and across associations are key. But what can this approach deliver for our members and the Federation?
This September will be the first anniversary of a joint schools and TAFE presence at a community market in Surry Hills and it wasn’t our last; we came back together later last year at the Newtown festival. Each time TAFE, Eastern Suburbs and Inner City Councillors and activists have joined together to talk to our community about our campaigns and how community members are important in protecting learning opportunities for all.
Community campaigning through a presence at a market or fete is an effective strategy to broadening our conversations with our communities. As the Federation continues to build our Stop TAFE Cuts and Gonski campaigns we need to ensure we are continuing to expand our supporter base. These conversations tool up the people we talk with to be our advocates. TAFE activists will continue to attend local and state wide festivals and fairs for the rest of this year.
We would encourage you to consider building relationships with other associations and inviting speakers to your meetings that explain how our campaigns fit together and have the potential to impact on all.
TAFE, Eastern Suburbs and Inner City Councillors and activists are heading back to the Surry Hills Festival on September 27. This year the festival is in the holidays, so drop in and say hi if you are out that way.
Michelle Rosicky is a City Organiser and Maxine Sharkey is Assistant General Secretary (Post School Education).