Welcome to GROW Dems

The mission of GROW Dems is to win elections and build the Democratic Party.  We recruit, train, and facilitate Neighborhood Volunteers in engaging registered Democrats in the democratic process.  During elections we encourage them to vote and provide voting information.  In non-election years, we create a sense of community and comraderie among Democrats by promoting neighborhood-based social, issue education, and skills training activities. Canvassing by neighborhood volunteers has been scientifically proven to be the most successful method of winning elections, so we train our Volunteers and Leaders in the most effective canvassing and related techniques. We invite you to use this site and the many linked sites to improve your volunteer management skills and increase your knowledge of Get Out the Vote and party-building techniques. First-time visitors may want to use our Quick Start Guide.

It is Time to Focus on Implementing Change By Winning Elections

Movements often start with marches, protests, angry town hall ambushes, and citizen lobbying. However, every movement must eventually focus on winning elections to actually implement change. Neighborhood organizing is critical to winning elections.  People are urging that it be made a priority at all levels.  See The Hill article,  DNC chair’s No. 1 job is to elect more Democrats. Period.  The new DNC Deputy Chair, Keith Ellison, is a strong believer in party building through community building.  The New Yorker recently quoted him saying the work of organizing

isn’t just about winning elections.  It’s about building community.  It’s a  way for neighbors to talk about stuff, when neighbors don’t usually talk.”

­­That is exactly what the SLOCDP GROW Dems program advocates. When Dem neighbors start talking, turnout increases, social group identification kicks in, yard signs start popping up, more Dems come out of the closet, and we start winning elections.  This is the fun part of self-governance (we don’t even think of it as politics).  Of course, none of this happens without trained leaders to recruit, train, facilitate, and motivate neighborhood volunteers.  That is what we are working hard to put in place as quickly as possible.  Our goal is to have one neighborhood volunteer for every fifty registered Democrats in SLO County.  That is over 1,000 volunteers distributed throughout all of the 250 precincts in the county. Continue reading “It is Time to Focus on Implementing Change By Winning Elections”

The Movement Resisting Donald Trump Has A Name: The (Local) Democratic Party

The following are excerpts from an inspiring article in the Huffington Post.

While outside groups are getting the attention, local Democratic parties nationwide are seeing a surge of interest.  All across the country, party meetings that had once been sleepy affairs, dominated by Robert’s Rules of Order and a handful of graying activists, have become standing room only. The overflowing crowds have sent stunned party regulars scrambling to find new venues, while the surge in interest, and the coinciding fundraising boost, is enabling local chapters to hire staff and build infrastructure in previously unthinkable ways. On the national level, Democratic politicians have been rushing to respond to the sudden outpouring.

Mark Fraley, chairman of the Monroe County Democratic Party in Indiana . . said he received 65 emails in a single weekend from people requesting to become precinct chairs . . . .  The county party has restructured and added five deputy chairs to channel all the energy, and created six new committees.

The resistance to President Donald Trump has taken a variety of forms, all of them well chronicled by the media. Amid it all, observers and participants alike have wondered what the name is for this nascent movement. The Resistance? The Opposition?  But if the swelling ranks of county-level meetings are an indication of things to come, the grassroots movement underway already has a name. It’s called the Democratic Party. Continue reading “The Movement Resisting Donald Trump Has A Name: The (Local) Democratic Party”

North SLO County GROW Training

North County Volunteer Leader Training
Saturday, February 18th, 11 am – 1 pm
Lucky Lady Restaurant,
1467 Creston Road, Paso Robles

The uprising of volunteerism is continuing to unfold in SLO County after the record-breaking Women’s March.  The February 4th kickoff for the precinct organizing and community-building program of the County Democratic Party was a great success.  Over twenty-five people signed up to be Volunteer Leaders for their districts and areas, and they have been signing up more people to be Precinct Leaders.

The GROW Dems Volunteer Leadership Training program is used to train leaders in how to recruit and facilitate volunteers for party-building, resistance activities, and GOTV.  The goal is to create a permanent Party infrastructure of Precinct Organizers and Neighborhood Volunteers in every precinct of the county.  The Neighborhood Volunteers will engage Party members, register voters, strive to get one hundred percent of Democrats voting in each election, build community, and raise the Party profile. No commitment is required to attend the orientation and training.

Year-round, Locally Based Precinct Organizing is Essential

 

The article below is excerpted from a great article by Meteor Blades that talks about the need for both demonstrations and party organizations.  He is an experienced organizer and tells the story of Democrats independently taking initiative and organizing their precincts.

“We are stuck in a rinse-repeat cycle in which a relatively large percentage of Democratic and Democrat-leaning voters turn out in presidential election years followed by a steep fall-off in said voters every midterm year. Nobody needs persuading that this has massive and massively damaging consequences for the progressive agenda and the vast number of rank-and-file Americans who would benefit if that agenda were turned into policy. Continue reading “Year-round, Locally Based Precinct Organizing is Essential”

Outline of SLO County GROW Dems Training 2/4/17

GROW Dems
Grassroots Organizing Workers
for Democrats
Party Building Program

Program Development

  • Proven in a county of 400,000.  300 precincts organized from scratch.
  • County had been red for 30 yrs. GROW Dems turned it blue in 2004 and it has been blue ever since for all statewide offices.
  • Designed by Jill Fixler, nationally recognized volunteer leader training expert.

Structure

  • Leadership job broken down into time commitments manageable for volunteers. All have team of seven they are responsible for.
  • District Director (DD) responsible for one of the five County Supervisor Districts.
  • Each district divided into 7 areas with approximately 7 precincts each. Area Leaders (AL) responsible for the 7 Precinct Leaders.
  • Each Precinct Leaders (PL) responsible for 7 Precinct Volunteers (PVs)
  • Fluid, task-focused structure with no position pride

Continue reading “Outline of SLO County GROW Dems Training 2/4/17”