Political Education & Leadership Development

Successful movements are built on strong leadership from a broad group of people who are most affected by injustice. HCHR campaigns view everyone as a potential leader and as both a teacher and student. They actively cultivate people’s leadership by engaging people in campaign activity and political education and by bringing members into ever-deeper levels of organizational responsibility, collective decision making, political analysis and strategy. The following resources include educational and assessment tools as well as samples of full workshops.

Leadership Development


Political Education Resources and Workshops

  • Teeter Totter:  This exercise is designed to get participants wrestling with how power relationships work in our society.  It offers a simple way to understand how decisions are made in our current political system and how that changes when we organize.
  • Economic, Political and Social Movement History: This educational timeline moves from the 1600s up to the 2000s and traces key moments in economic, political and social movement history in the United States and the world.
  • People’s Convention Facilitator’s Guide (excerpts):  These three Facilitator’s Guides (for the Problem Tree, Principled Vision and Recipe for our Movement workshops) were created for and used at Vermont’s People’s Convention for Human Rights in 2012.
  • Human Rights Tree Workshop:  This exercise is designed to get people thinking about the root causes of the problems they experience and see in their workplaces and communities, and to introduce the concept of doing “root work” to transform the underlying systems.
  • Human Rights Principles and Vision Workshop Facilitator’s Guide:  This workshop explores the human rights framework as a way to articulate a vision for a different kind of world and to increase understanding of its principles.  The workshop helps participants to think about these principles structurally and apply them to actual needs, situations and policy proposals.
  • People’s Recipe Ingredients – Key Points for Facilitators:  The People’s Recipe highlights the ingredients of the Vermont Worker’s Center’s organizing model.  This resource provides a brief definition and several discussion points for each ingredient of the recipe.