Growing Your Local Group

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Description

On this page, you’ll find information for how to find, recruit and talk about CCL to potential new supporters.

Supporters are the backbone of CCL! People want to help, be part of a team and exercise personal power, but they also have to balance their lives. To keep vibrant groups it is important to look for opportunities to add new volunteers.

Breadcrumb
/topics/group-recruiting
Related Trainings
Growing Your Local Group is part of the Recruiting For Your Group series.
TOC and Guide Section
 
Useful Perspectives When Recruiting New Volunteers
  1. All organizing is one-to-one and personal. Mass emails don’t reach people, you reach them.
  2. You are selling an organization, not a problem. Discuss what it is about CCL that makes you volunteer your precious time for us. Talk about that more than you talk about the threat of climate change.
  3. Always talk solutions when you talk about climate change.
 
Inviting new volunteers — Tips and Ideas

Determine who are the passionate volunteers in your community?

  • Look for new people: new to activism, new to town, newly retired. People who aren’t already committed to 10 other causes.
  • Good prospects—people with passion, with time or skills, especially relationship skills, and with the right attitude. Issue knowledge is less important—people can learn that.
  • Be generous to everyone. Not everyone becomes a chapter member, but sometimes people turn out to be good to know for other reasons, like for particular knowledge or access that they have.
  • Drop CCL into the conversation everywhere, as part of how you talk about yourself. Say one or two sentences:
    “My name is Madeleine and I teach first grade, but lately what’s even more important to me is doing something about climate change so my students have a strong future. I spend a lot of my free time volunteering with Citizens’ Climate Lobby because it’s been such an effective organization to work with.”
    Then pause for reactions. Say a little, pause, wait for a question. Interested people will keep the conversation going, those who aren’t interested will change the subject. Tell powerful personal success stories.
  • Go where the concerned people already are. Tabling, rallies, and public events. It’s your job to start the conversation. “What brought you here today?” “Have you been thinking about climate change lately?” “Have you written to your member of Congress lately?” Look for speaking or outreach opportunities (Rotary, community fairs, churches, etc.)
  • Make a list of friends, family, and coworkers. Personally call to invite them.
  • Create a list of potential contacts who are community members. Call to invite them.
  • Watch for LTEs and Op-eds about climate change in your local newspaper. Look up the authors in whitepages.com and invite them to your CCL meeting.
  • Do a search on twitter.com (you don’t need an account) using the following command: near:Austin AND climate change (replace the city name with your city and state) This search shows tweets from people and organizations in your local area about climate change) to invite to your chapter meeting or climate event.
  • Contact community organizations (Rotary or Lyons clubs, professional associations, community and university environmental or political science clubs, leadership clubs, faith-based groups, community churches, political groups, etc). Ask them to announce the workshop and/or send a representative.
  • Attend eco events. Show up in the places where the people who are looking for us. Bring a clipboard with a signup sheet.
 
Practice your pitch
  • Take a minute to write down in 2 sentences what CCL is and what attracted you to it. Then practice it in front of the mirror so it rolls off your tongue easily.
  • Invite people you want to something, either on the spot or very soon after. Invite them to coffee, the intro call, your next meeting, or to come with you to
  • something you are doing.
 
Follow-up
  • Follow up immediately on any new volunteer referrals with phone calls. It may take multiple calls to get results from a prospective volunteer.
  • Invite them to be part of our Wednesday introductory conference call at 8:00 PM Eastern / 5:00 PM Pacific time.
  • Eventually, people are going to start coming to you, as word spreads about your chapter. Follow up promptly (within 24 hours is best) with people who come to you, before something else gets their attention. Welcome them. Treat them like they are important and special.
  • Be enthusiastic with new prospects and generous with your attention.
Length
Press play to start the video (56m 28s)
https://vimeo.com/album/5497582
Video Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

Section 1
(1:22)

Intro & Agenda
(From beginning)

Running your local group
(4:05)

Growing your group
(12:25)

Outreach opportunities
(16:16)

Setting up one-on-ones
(34:43)

Facilitating the meeting
(39:20)

Uplifting Introversion
(51:10)

Instructor(s)

Brett Cease, Volunteer Education Coordinator

Tamara Staton, Greater Pacific Northwest Regional Coordinator

Downloads

Download the Growing Your Local Group presentation or Google Slides.

Audio length
Press play to start the audio (15m 46s)
Audio embed code
Audio Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

Intro & Agenda
(From beginning)

Running your local group
(4:05)

Growing your group
(12:25)

Outreach opportunities
(16:16)

Setting up one-on-ones
(34:43)

Facilitating the meeting
(39:20)

Uplifting Introversion
(51:10)

Instructor(s)

Brett Cease, Volunteer Education Coordinator

Tamara Staton, Greater Pacific Northwest Regional Coordinator

Go Deeper
Have a question about what's worked best for growing groups in your region? Reach out to your Regional Coordinator for their thoughts!
Discussion Topic
Have a question? Ask it in the Forums Chapter Organizing category.
To Print
Category
Training
Topics
Chapter Organizing
Format
Audio / Video, Presentation
File Type
Google Slides, PowerPoint (.pptx)