Camp Courage: Watch the videos, check out the pictures and sign up to attend a training in your community
Inspired by the Camp Obama trainings that developed a new grassroots movement in American politics, Camp Courage is an intensive two-day training designed to teach the principles and skills of community organizing to activists committed to restoring marriage equality to California.
Drawing on techniques honed for decades by progressive social movements, Camp Courage teaches empowerment, team building, leadership development, and grassroots organizing skills.
Camp Courage kicked off in Los Angeles on January 25, attracting 221 participants to a one-day training in California. The Courage Campaign followed it up by going to the Central Valley to train marriage equality activists in Fresno on March 7-8, bringing 151 people together for two days of community building and skills development.
Both events received rave reviews from participants, with Los Angeles evaluations averaging 9.36 and Fresno evaluations 9.56, on a scale of 1 to 10.
Gay-marriage proponents in California, anticipating another loss, this time in court, have turned their focus to trying to win over potential voters in some unlikely places.
Last month, 200 gay-rights activists gathered at a Holiday Inn in this city at the heart of California’s conservative Central Valley for a two-day training course on how to pair Internet-based social networking with old-fashioned canvassing to promote a gay-friendly agenda. It is part of a wider effort to reach out to the state’s more conservative precincts, with polls showing Californians are evenly split on the issue.
“If you want to win in this, you have to change people’s minds through contact,” said Rick Jacobs, a former Democratic Party organizer and founder of the Courage Campaign, the online-organizing network for liberal causes that sponsored the Fresno event, one of several across the state dubbed Camp Courage.