Advocacy and Recruitment – A Participant’s Report

Two representatives of the Roma Youth Help Association (Hungarian abbr. RISE) attended a training recently organized by the School of Public Life on advocacy and recruitment. The event was open for underprivileged members of grassroots communities.

The private individuals and representatives of organizations who met during these two days shared a common calling to promote issues of societal importance with a profound impact on a larger scale and to look for answers to actual problems. A complex, varied group of people came together from different places, from different organizations with different viewpoints.

Our lecturers were Tessza Udvarhelyi, acting manager of the School of Public Life and Gyula Balog, an activist from the City is for All group.

The basic concepts of the training: advocacy, drafting mass support/raising membership and publicity were all broken down into important sub-topics. During the lectures we were introduced to the steps of advocacy, were advised on recruitment and on how to draft mass support and on how to step up against power in a successful way. Apart from advocacy communication and the conscious usage of media were also discussed as important tools of the success of a well-functioning organization.

What I especially liked about the training was that the lectures were interactive; we, as participants had the opportunity to tell our personal experiences, ask questions and to practice the theory we had learnt previously in simulated cases.

The training proved to be very useful and I am really happy that we were able to participate: on a personal level we all learnt a lot and what’s even more important we got the strength and motivation to develop and further promote RISE. We’ll make all efforts to pass on the knowledge we got during the two days’ training to other young people in our organization and believe that soon we’ll have an opportunity to use these new ideas in our daily routine.

Brigitta Berki