Category: Community Organizing

November 14, 2018 Wandra Green

Voices of Everyday Leaders

SNAP Benefits Guarantees Family’s Food Thirty-seven-year-old LeAnn is married with five children and five stepchildren (who live with their grandmother). She has a Master’s degree in business administration but can […]

We All Matter

Ayanna Albertson

I’ve only had the chance to vote in two presidential elections: 2012 and 2016. My first election was monumental. I was a part of making history. I remember the overwhelming […]

Will Latino’s Turnout to Vote This Year?

Thomas Kennedy

With only days left until the midterm election is finally over, one question lingers in the minds of Democratic operatives working in battleground states across the country. Will Latino turnout […]

Underserved communities find no relief as water rates increase

Jiquanda Johnson

Tia Simpson stood in front of nearly 40 journalists pleading her case for clean and affordable water. The 34-year-old Flint resident endured the aftermath of being exposed to the city’s […]

Voices of Everyday Leaders

Bobbi Dempsey

PA Group Strives to Bust Myths About SNAP—and People Who Use It Lisa Raditz cringes when she overhears some of the comments people make about SNAP recipients based on common […]

En la Florida los votantes estan activos por Gillum

Elizabeth Nazarett

En la Florida los votantes estan bien activos. Este 6 de noviembre muchos dicen que van a unir el voto por Andrew Gillum para gobernador. Dicen que van a votar […]

Column: Voices of Everyday Leaders

Tomicka Robinson

Why we vote I’ve been asked a lot lately “why I knock on doors” to encourage people to vote. Mainly because of my background in social justice work. I’ve used […]

Voices of Everyday Leaders

Melissa Chadburn

The work of community organizers is daunting. Late nights. Endless knocking on doors. Rallies and protests to protect our healthcare, ensure we all have enough food to eat and keep […]

Hay que Votar por Nuestra Salud

Elizabeth Nazarett

Vivir diez años sin poder tener un seguro de salud fue realmente difícil. Durante ese tiempo, y como madre soltera con un salario modesto, debí escoger entre darle techo y […]

There’s Too Much On the Line to Skip This Election

Elizabeth Fernandez

With so much at stake in this election, in Florida and across the nation, registering to vote before the Oct. 9th deadline is so important. That’s why former First Lady […]

Use your right to vote to put people in office that have our best interest in mind

Maliha Kareem

Young people are organized and highly motivated to make a difference this year towards an inclusive Florida. Students like Brandon Dasent are changing the political landscape. Although Dasent won’t be […]

Florida voters gather at Netroots Nation to unite the vote

Elizabeth Fernandez

I’m at Netroots Nation along with hundreds of political activists who are passionate about creating stronger communities for all. I took this opportunity to ask my fellow activists from Florida […]

This Land is Our Land: Outgrowing Our Roots

Mikka Macdonald

This Land is Our Land is a series about diversity in the American outdoors. You can read part one here. Today, approximately eighty percent of park visitors are white, and […]

In Florida, we are voting to change the status-quo

Maliha Kareem

With life changing decisions on the ballot, young people in Florida are gearing up for the 2018 elections to hold everyone accountable and make profound changes in our state’s Constitution. […]

Seniors and Children Demand—Hands Off

Maya Boddie

“There’s no reason we should be debating about food,” Curtis Vlalock of Philadelphia said as he approached the Rayburn House Building, along with others who would agree. The Center for […]

Justice for marginalized communities not a factor in filling SCOTUS seat; it’s up to us to vote, voice our concerns now

Alaina Beverly

Whether you care about voting rights, affirmative action, LGBTQ rights, immigrant rights and especially a woman’s right to control her own body, filling retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s […]

Bringing the Community Together, One Business at a Time

Sebastian Medina-Tayac

Bounce Milwaukee closed on May Day in observance of Voces de la Frontera’s “Day Without Immigrants” strike and rally.

SNAP works and so should Congress

Marcia Dinkins

WASHINGTON D.C.—  The Center for Community Change hosted a partners and leaders convening to discuss strategies and to develop collective actions opposing the harmful cuts proposed in the Farm Bill, […]

We need people of color to vote: Here’s how.

Thomas Kennedy

Voting is the most basic and important right an individual has in a democracy. As voters, we elect people to represent our communities and if a majority of voters do […]

What’s Next for the March for Our Lives Movement?

Karl Catarata

Exactly one month ago, the world watched as Americans took to the streets to march for their lives and demand that legislators enact common sense gun reform. Sparked by youth […]

Continuing the unfinished work of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy

Center for Community Change

As we are memorializing the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. this week during the 50th anniversary of his assassination, we are reminded that the Center for Community Change’s […]

Ideas of MLK, RFK still needed today

Dorian Warren

This piece originally published in the Memphis Commercial Appeal. When President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the War on Poverty in 1964, his audacious goal was to end poverty in the […]

The Resistance is older than the White House

Mikka Macdonald

The Resistance is older than the United States. It is older than hashtags, livestreams, and Facebook invitations. The Resistance began the moment colonizers stepped off their boats and claimed North […]

After Trump’s fake deadline on Dreamers passes, immigrant youth still in limbo

Thomas Kennedy

In the aftermath of the Parkland shooting, the focus of lawmakers has largely shifted from finding a solution for the thousands of Dreamers who have been left under threat of […]

Caring for our loved ones is a key issue in this year’s elections in Michigan

Mike Griffin

This November, Michigan has a critical choice to make for the future of families struggling to get by. Attacks on immigrants, a lack of good paying jobs and the exploding […]

Jim Crow lives in Nevada’s elections

Cassandra Little

Several weeks ago, a gentleman came to a Progressive Leadership Alliance Nevada (PLAN) meeting and asked for help restoring his right to vote. After 12 years, he was now eligible, […]

What Happened In Parkland Hits Home in Las Vegas

Karl Catarata

trigger warning: death, gun violence This year, February 14th fell on both Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday. The scene here in Las Vegas showed people in the streets with ashes […]

7 Lessons I learned from the Rust Belt and Appalachia

Stephen Smith

I  am a community organizer in West Virginia. At the end of 2017,  I traveled for a week with friends and colleagues through Appalachia and the Rust Belt, seeking lessons […]

When the last measures of security are under attack, it’s time to organize and amplify.

Cristina Rayas

The aftermath of the 2016 Election was an opportunity for lawmakers to take aim at the safety net programs in the United States, putting profits over people.

Happy 50th Birthday, to the Center for Community Change!

Cristina Rayas

The Center for Community Change turns 50 this year! Staff and extended family of CCC have special birthday messages for the organization that faces a major milestone in transformational change. […]

Florida gets a second chance to make amends for its racist past

Thomas Kennedy

Back in late 2016, a grassroots coalition of volunteers accomplished a remarkable feat. More than 68,314 petition signatures were collected in Florida, triggering a Supreme Court review on a ballot […]

Movements make history. We work to build movements.

Center for Community Change

CCCAction empowers the people most affected by injustice to lead movements to improve the policies that affect their lives.

CBU freshman ‘had a breakdown’ when she learned of DOJ plan to end DACA

Rebekah Marie Yearout

Chantel Barcenas had an identity crisis when learning she was not a U.S. citizen. An Obama-era policy helped her find a sense of purpose — all now in flux

Black and Brown Families United in the Era of Political Dysfunction

Paige DeLoach

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post. By Paige DeLoach When I visited home for the first time after the 2016 election, my mother spoke to me in a […]

Miami Airport Workers Demand Fair Wages And Health Insurance

Thomas Kennedy

This article originally appeared on the Huffington Post. Summer is a busy time for airports all across this country, but in a major tourist destination like Miami, this is especially […]

Policing the Protesters

Micaela Watts

This article originally appeared on MLK50. When the interim director of the Memphis Police Department linked arms with organizers of a protest that shut down traffic on the city’s Interstate […]

Sunday rally planned to mark one-year anniversary of Memphis bridge protest

Wendi C. Thomas

This article originally appeared on MLK50. On Sunday, organizers will gather at Tom Lee Park to mark the anniversary of the July 10, 2016 protest that shut down the Hernando-Desoto […]

“Take it to the bridge”

Wendi C. Thomas

This article originally appeared on MLK50. MEMPHIS — July 10 marks the anniversary of the largest spontaneous act of civil disobedience in the city’s modern history. The spark: The police killings of […]

Art Gives Voice To Young People Hurt By Trump’s Deportation Machine

Thomas Kennedy

This article first appeared in the Huffington Post. Growing up undocumented, one of my biggest fears was being separated from my family. I remember the anxiety and worry I felt […]

Come Back to Art: How Creativity and Activism Intersect

Alison Stine

This article first appeared on Equal Voice. I wasn’t trained in this. I didn’t go for school for this. Nobody pays me for this, and nobody expects me to be […]

We Will Continue To Fight The Hate Deep In The Heart of Texas

Thomas Kennedy

This article first appeared on the Huffington Post. In 2011, the Florida legislature attempted to pass an Arizona-style “show me your papers” law at the behest of Republican Governor Rick […]

How to Make Your Voice Heard Without Uttering a Single Word

Sharisse Tracy

Saturday Night Live has always taken politicians to task with their own way of friendly banter and jesting. And sometimes they take aim at the average citizen, as they did […]

‘Saturday Night Live’ Skit Has People Talking About Who and What Really is Dividing Us

Wendi C. Thomas

Originally published by The Undefeated. Did a Saturday Night Live sketch last week hint at a future hard to envision in today’s bitter political climate — a future in which […]

Conference connects young people as next generation of leaders

Angela Pupino

During the last weekend in July, I found renewed hope and optimism for the future of our country. I joined 70 students from across the country who are interning this […]

And #StillIRise: #PeoplesConvention takes over Pittsburgh

Wendi C. Thomas

Wendi C. Thomas is a writing fellow for the Center for Community Change. [View the story “And #StillIRise: #PeoplesConvention takes over Pittsburgh” on Storify]

Comic W. Kamau Bell: We Are Living In The ‘Most Racial America’

Wendi C. Thomas

Originally published on the Huffington Post.  PITTSBURGH – Police have one standard for black people and another for white people – and as proof, comic W. Kamau Bell played at […]

Out of Homelessness, A Mom Turns Advocate

Fred McKissack Jr.

Originally published on Rooflines, a Shelterforce blog. Jenean F. and her husband worked hard to achieve the increasingly elusive American Dream. She was a stay at home mom and he […]

Black Lives Matter Movement and Opportunities Deprived Go Hand In Hand

Fred McKissack Jr.

Originally published on Equal Voice.  What does it say about the value of Black lives when too many of those lives are in crumbling schools, drinking poisoned water, finding themselves […]

OneAmerica and Highline College Stand for Transit Equity

Center for Community Change

Written by OneAmerica organizer Carly Brook. Originally posted on the OneAmerica blog. Reliable access to transportation is the single most important factor in escaping poverty. This issue agitated and resonated […]

Missouri Athletes Bust Through Intolerance

Fred McKissack Jr.

Originally published by The Progressive.  With the walk-out that led to the resignation of a university president and chancellor, the University of Missouri’s black football players showed their power to […]

UFCW Leading the Fight for Immigration Reform

Andi Ryder

In 2014, there were 8.1 million undocumented immigrants employed in the United States. These hard-working men and women live in constant fear of arrest and deportation which would rip their […]

Shouting Beyond the Feminist Choir

Angela Zhao

When America celebrates Women’s Equality Day today, perhaps she will post pictures of her inspirational inhabitants on Instagram, or write a long heartfelt post about female empowerment on Facebook, sprinkling […]

Supporting Community Organizing to Build a More Inclusive Society

Center for Community Change

By Connie Heller Pictured to the left: A portion of a quilt created by Connie Heller in honor of Trayvon Martin. A better world is possible. A world in which […]

Netroots, #BlackLivesMatter and the Putting Families First campaign

Olivia Chow

This week we have seen a phenomenal shift in the conversation around race and poverty.  We are beginning to see a movement’s narrative take hold in the public debate and […]

Building Coalitions at the 2015 White House AAPI Youth Forum

Angela Zhao

Last Thursday, July 9th, over 150 Asian American and Pacific Islander college students from across the nation convened at the White House for the 2015 White House Initiative on Asian […]

Grassroots Leaders, Politicians, the American People All Agree: It’s Time to Expand Social Security

Angela Zhao

Although the White House Conference on Aging is held only once every ten years, Monday’s event was a crucial time to address issues for older Americans, especially as they retire […]

Arnie Graf: 2015 Change Champion in Community Organizing

Melissa Hewitt

Kate Casa contributed to this article. It was the mid-1960s and Arnie Graf, a 19-year-old student at the mostly segregated University of Buffalo, found himself witnessing discrimination in a very […]


Deirdra Reed

This blog was originally published on  When my sister-in-law was pregnant with her first child, she drove me crazy, calling me at all hours to tell me about every little […]

Cleaning Our Rivers, Greening Our City and Creating Living Wage Jobs in Washington, D.C.

Center for Community Change

This post was originally published on the Coalition on Human Needs blog. By: Rev. Kelly Wilkins Pictured to the left: Mayor Bowser, Kelly Wilkins and CEO and General Manager of […]

Thinking of My Mother and Our Broken Economy

Chris Dasan Ahanu Massenburg

When I was growing up, I was a “latch key” kid, a popular term for a child who has to come home and lock himself in after school because no […]

Baltimore doesn’t need more mothers like Toya Graham

Wendi C. Thomas

When Baltimore mom Toya Graham saw TV footage of her masked son joining rioters following the funeral of Freddie Gray, she found him on the streets and beat him. Video […]

Fight for $15 Expands to Fight for Good Jobs

Center for Community Change

This piece originally appeared on On Wednesday morning, holding a sign that read “Show me $15 and a union,” Letrice Donaldson marched with around 200 people under gray skies […]

Meet Jorge Antonio Renaud, the newest CCC organizer to end mass incarceration

Center for Community Change

Holà. My name is Jorge Antonio Renaud, and I am the newest member of the team dedicated to amplifying the voices and possibilities of men and women caged in American […]

Reflections from Selma

Tamika Middleton

Savannah Williams remembers where she was on March 7, 1965. “When Bloody Sunday happened, “ she explained, “I was at my first job working for the United States Department of Agriculture […]

“I believe that we will win!”

Tamika Middleton

At 7:30 am, about 100 airport people marched into the atrium of the world’s busiest airport chanting, “We can’t survive on $7.25.” The crowd got bigger as they rallied, with […]

Social Security expansion: Something we can all agree on

Center for Community Change

Yesterday, Nancy J. Altman and Eric R. Kingson, authors of the new book “Social Security Works! Why Social Security Isn’t Going Broke and How Expanding It Will Help Us All,” […]

MLK and the “Beloved Community”

Ronnie Galvin

On Friday, January 16th, Kica Matos, Director of Immigrant Rights and Racial Justice at the Center for Community Change, delivered the keynote address at the Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum’s 30th […]

A Mother’s Love, An Activist’s Mind

Allie Carter

Below is a post from Tammy Thomas Miles, Field Organizer with CCC — Each year at Thanksgiving I often take the time to reflect on all the things which I […]

The livelihood of our families at the heart of our #OneStruggle

Olivia Chow

Can we talk about these last few days? They have been emotional. We ended last week taking part in rallies and events across the country celebrating the long anticipated administrative […]

We Can’t Survive on $7.25

Tamika Middleton

This piece originally appeared on At 6 a.m. last Thursday, a small group of people gathered at the Burger King on the corner of North Avenue and Hunt Street in […]

Reflection on Ferguson, Missouri

Tammy Thomas-Miles

Field Organizer Tammy Thomas-Miles went to Ferguson, Missouri over the Labor Day weekend as part of a strategy session with other organizers. Here is Tammy’s first person account of the […]

When Enough Gets to Be Enough

Tamika Middleton

This blog was originally posted on the Voices for Human Needs blog.  On Monday night, thousands of people marched through downtown Atlanta in the pouring rain.  Most of them I […]

Anatomy of a Veto

Gary Sandusky

Gary Sandusky is a Senior Field Organizer at the Center for Community Change. In 2009, Center for Community Change assigned me to work closely with the Alliance for a Just […]

Raising America’s Pay

Donna DeLaCruz

On June 4, the Economic Policy Institute launched “Raising America’s Pay,” a research and public education initiative that seeks to make wage growth an urgent priority. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez […]

Minimum Wage Momentum!

Donna DeLaCruz

Pictured here: People cheer the moment the minimum wage bill passes in the Seattle City Council. There have been a lot of minimum wage victories in the news lately. Yesterday, the […]

‘Ain’t Got No Wiggle Room’

Deepak Bhargava

Originally published on the new blog Poverty is everywhere. More than one in three Americans—106 million people—live below or perilously close to the federal poverty line. If you pick […]

Invest in Residents Who Want to Work

Center for Community Change

This piece was orginally published on the new blog Image via Baltimoreans United in Leadership Development.  By: Gary Crum My name is Gary Crum and I am a proud resident […]

Jobs Not Jails

Olivia Chow

Last week, through the cold and the rain, the Jobs Not Jails coalition sent a strong message to their state of Massachusetts—redirect $2 billion for new prison beds to a […]

Frances Perkins: Equal pay trailblazer

Nicole Duarte

Frances Perkins, former Secretary of Labor and first woman to hold a Presidential cabinet appointment, began her career fighting poverty in some of the most impoverished communities in New York […]

Space in the movement for everyone

Center for Community Change

By: Diana Colin Education is key to escaping poverty – that’s why Diana Colin started organizing as a student volunteer. Now she’s the California staff organizer with the Coalition for […]

Why I Give to CCC

Kyle Simpson

After reading a New York Times op-ed by Arthur C. Brooks in which he discusses why he enjoys fund-raising, I began to think about why I give money to the […]

Standing up for caregivers

Center for Community Change

By: Jeannie Brown Virjeana “Jeannie” Brown is an organizer with the Montana Organizing Project working to protect and expand Social Security. She is also running for Montana’s 67th House District. […]

A right way and wrong way to make money

Center for Community Change

By: Pam Bournival Pam Bournival is a manufactured homeowner and an activist with MHAction, a program of the Center for Community Change that organizes and mobilizes the residents of manufactured home communities […]

Why I won’t be quiet.

Center for Community Change

By: Hattie Wilkins Hattie Wilkins is a great-grandmother and organizer with CCC partner Ohio Organizing Collaborative. Growing up my parents used to tell me “A closed mouth doesn’t get fed, […]

“Si, se puede”

Abby Marco

A self-proclaimed “Born-Again Feminist,” Dolores Huerta, now 83, has been a prominent community organizer and civil rights activist for most of her life. Though, she is best known for co-founding […]

Women Fight Poverty NOW

Nicole Duarte

I walked up the 30th identical driveway to the 30th nearly identical house with my canvassing packet and clipboard tucked neatly under my arm. I smiled at a man working […]

The Day the Invisible Become Visible

Center for Community Change

The best description I’ve heard of why May 1st plays such a significant role in the immigrant rights movement comes from Angelica Salas, the Executive Director of the Coalition for […]

CCC and USAction Announce Exciting New Partnership

Center for Community Change

By: Jeff Blum, Executive Director of USAction Today CCC and USAction are pleased to announce an exciting new partnership. A partnership to meet the challenge of our times. For more […]

Why I Fight on April 10th

Center for Community Change

Make The Road NY member, Maria Magdalena Flores, shares her story fleeing a violent civil war to come to this country and fight for the opportunity of the 11 million […]

Is the RNC Ready for an Immigration Makeover?

Center for Community Change

By Alesia Lucas & Sarah English The Republican National Committee (RNC) has wrapped up their meeting and may be ready for a party makeover. Instead of playing the blame game, […]

Tell your Representatives that you want immigration reform, now!

Alesia Lucas

Tomorrow is the final day of National Call-in week for immigration reform.  We need everyone to call their representatives and urge them to support immigration reform that keeps families together […]

Honoring Deepak Bhargava’s Commitment to Social Justice

Alesia Lucas

On Sunday, April 21, 2013, The Committee for Effective Leadership will honor four individuals for their exemplary leadership and service. Among the honorees is Deepak Bhargava the Executive Director of […]

A Great Day as VAWA is Reauthorized

Center for Community Change

Today, President Obama reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), expanding protection to immigrants, LGBT individuals and Native Americans.  At the bill signing, President Obama spoke of when the bill […]

A Bus Tour, Full of Stories and Strength

Emily Gelbaum

Last week, the National Keeping Families Together Bus Tour launched from Chicago, IL carrying families and individuals directly impacted by the current immigration system. The bus riders are calling on […]

The Immigrant Community Comes Together

Jingru Huang

Leaders of the Asian Pacific American community are supporting the Keeping Families Together mission. Comprehensive immigration reform is essential because families should never be separated. When mentioning the “undocumented immigrants”, […]

Immigrants to Yale, “We aren’t Guinea pigs!”

Alesia Lucas

Yale recently suspended plans to create a center in conjunction with the Department of Defense that would train U.S. soldiers in the art of interrogation by using immigrants as their […]

Alone on Valentine’s Day Because Of Deportation

Alesia Lucas

In December the Fair Immigration Reform Movement launched the Keeping Families Together campaign, the campaign collects the countless stories of families split because of our broken immigration system. Yesterday was […]

Making Minimum Wage a Living Wage

Alesia Lucas

Overall, 77% of those who watched The State of the Union Address were pleased with what the President had to say.  It was a passionate plea and directive to the […]

Immigration and LGBT Advocates

Alesia Lucas

When two Portland women renewed their vows in Oregon, living as a mixed-status couple, the moment was impactful for more than one reason.  The couple renewed their vows to illustrate […]

Dishonesty is Not the Best Policy

Jingru Huang

When police ask for your help, most people are inclined to help them. Amber’s husband falls into that category. But Amber and her family were shocked at what happened after […]

The OFA Takes a Page from Keeping Families Together

Alesia Lucas

With President Obama’s second term in full swing his former campaign organization has decided to take on immigration reform.  Taking a page from the Keeping Families Together Campaign, The Obama […]

An Eye-Opener of a Week for Me

Center for Community Change

I’ve been volunteering at the Latino Student Fund (LSF), a local nonprofit in Washington, DC, that provides “academic support to at-risk and underprivileged Latino youth,” for nearly two years. And […]

The Poverty Predicament

Alesia Lucas

The word ‘poor’ is treated like a four-letter word by politicians. But with the downturn of our economy and slow job market, the issue of poverty has become more serious […]

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