Sunday, December 2, 2012

Community Mobilization

Community Mobilization

Expectation setting.Its more than just expectation setting,  its a tool to unite a group and community together. A simple exercise that we all do all the time. Personally, this workshop reminded me of how important it is. 
You can't mobilize a community without a common goal, sounds simple enough but its something that is almost expected and assumed. If the workshop is called Community Mobilization, that must be exactly what the workshop is about right ?I recently attended a workshop hosted by PeerNetBC focused on this very topic.

During the expectation setting portion of the workshop the facilitator passed around two different colored sticky notes to everyone. We would fill out what we were looking to learn on two sticky notes of one color and what we needed to from others to learn on the other color.Afterwards we each would stick it onto the board. I quickly realized that out of the two things I was looking for, only one of them was common to everyone else. All of us were attracted by the title of the workshop, community mobilization, but we were not all looking to learn the exact same things. 

Everyone around the room had experience starting their own initiatives and shared what helped and hindered them when it came to succeeding.  As we talked about expectation setting a girl shared her story about how the organization she was a part of never did expectation setting. Everyone was looking to achieve their own personal agenda and joined thinking that it was the exact same as the organizations goals. Since no one was getting what they wanted, all it did was breed discontent within the organization.  Without expectation setting that night I would have been the same as I would be wondering why we weren't covering everything I was looking for.

When I was recruiting for my student organization at Kwantlen, AIESEC, I thought all of them would be coming to join us because we provide personal development. However, when I really asked them why they joined it would change from "looking for an opportunity to meet new people" to "gaining relevant work experience". 

Not everyone is the same, and not everyone is looking for the same things. 

When trying to unite a community and mobilize it to accomplish a specific goal don't forget to do expectation setting.You will be surprised by all the different reasons people decide to join and support you.

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