As an organisation that exists to build the capacity of others to drive change, we have to be careful about saying this, but it is rarely easy to change the world.
Campaigning is a tough discipline. It covers a wide range of technical skills – from collecting evidence and developing strategy, to making connections with people and persuading them to think or behave differently. It draws upon a host of constantly changing change strategies – the world around us continually turns and we have to keep up. It requires us to both follow trends and judge what is possible, while also leading thinking and inspiring action. It means being able to look and feel authentic – plausible – to a very wide range of people. It means knowing ourselves, and the change strategies that work for us.
It is with all of this in mind that we are launching our new training programme – the Campaign Carousel™. We are so excited about this programme.
It is a completely fresh offering that proceeds from some key principles:
Our starting point was to create a programme that would give all the basic building blocks any campaigner needs. The first four workshops – which everyone will do – cover the essentials: how change happens; planning for change; campaign communications and the vital role of monitoring, evaluation and learning.
Then, we wanted to offer the flexibility to choose from a series of workshops, according to need and interest. From how to use the law and working with lived experience to movement building and influencing Parliament, the Campaign Carousel™ offers the opportunity to build a bespoke training programme.
SMK will provide some of the core content drawing on our own insights and tools – including the Social Change Project and the Power Sharing Project. But we are also bringing in a series of partners who are experts in their fields.
We wanted the programme to be flexible in terms of time too. The programme will repeat three times a year. There is no ‘right order’ to do the Campaign Carousel™ in and no deadline to finish it by – so riders can jump on and off according to what suits them. Hence the carousel!
And the whole programme is on-line so we hope to have ‘riders’ from all around the UK if not even further afield.
All those on the Campaign Carousel™ will be supported by SMK in a range of ways throughout their journey. We know how important peer learning and support is – so we will run regular social events for all those riding at the same time. And we are offering a regular coaching drop in to talk through particular challenges.
Of course, for those who just want to refresh or learn one particular skill, the courses on the carousel are available individually. But for those who are looking for a cost-effective, supported and flexible way to develop themselves across a range of campaigning skills the Campaign Carousel™ may just turn out to be the ride of their life.