Community organizers are leaders in charge of organizing and managing members of a community for a specific purpose. Community organizing covers a huge range of activities; for example, these individuals could work for a faith-based organization, a grassroots action campaign, a fundraising group, or political lobbying group.
Whatever cause has let to the formation of a community, the organizer is involved in tasks such as expanding the member base, organizing rallies, participating in campaign trainings, researching issues, gathering signatures, and setting up regular meetings with members. They work closely with members of their organization, defining problems and issues and discussing possible actions and outcomes. Additionally, campaign organizers may facilitate training and strategy sessions, as well as be involved in selecting and developing local leaders.
Their work can be indoors, outdoors, or some combination of the two. Although they may largely work indoors with their members, they may also appear outside to protest, recruit more members, or gather signatures. Their job involves a high amount of interaction with others, from discussions and meetings with members to training leaders to encouraging newcomers to get involved. Community organizers generally work during regular business hours, but there may be demonstrations and extra events that take place at night or on weekends.
Necessary qualifications vary from community to community, but in many cases, experience in the field is required. Relevant education, such as a master's degree in social work, may be preferred. Important competencies include excellent organizational skills, a strong leadership presence, strong verbal and written communication skills, creative and critical thinking skills, and good time management.
Community Organizer Tasks
Organize and promote targeted public awareness campaigns.
Reach out to community leaders and organizations to create a support system, build rapport, and increase access to resources.
Give dynamic presentations to groups of all sizes.
Recruit, screen, and train new members of the organization.