Yesterday was the beginning of something big. We at the East Bay DSA were blown away by the success of the soft kick-off for the California Single-Payer Health Care campaign. With our big campaign canvassing event coming up on February 25 (check it out on Facebook!), we took a day to train 35 of our members to be volunteer canvass leaders among our broader membership.
Saturday, February 11, 12:00 p.m. — 4:00 p.m., at the SEIU Local 1021 headquarters, 447 29th St., in Oakland.
We began with a workshop on single-payer: history, issues, and frequently asked questions. Two of our experienced organizers taught us the basics of door-to-door canvassing and gave us a demonstration. After some small-group practice and role-playing, it was time to hit our turfs.
Over the course of two hours, our canvassers — many of them first-time volunteers — collected 112 signatures and contact information for future opportunities. Reactions were overwhelmingly positive and many people expressed interest in learning more about the DSA as well. That was with just 35 volunteers in a single afternoon! We can't wait to see the results of our big kick-off and future organizing.
Our hungry door-knockers came back to pizza boxes and notepads as we debriefed on our afternoons. The feedback had two intentions: to help us learn from each other to become better organizers and to refine our collective strategy. We had many positives and deltas, and the overwhelming feeling among participating members was they now feel more than ready to ramp up our efforts in two weeks.