• Organizing in Barbershops and Beauty Salons

    Supporters, volunteers, and staff have been hard at work this summer building our organization in South Carolina. State Field Director Byron Wellman catches us up on what’s been happening since April.

    It’s been a really great few months for the campaign here in South Carolina. This year’s Summer Organizer Program has been the most successful we’ve ever had. We’ve recruited some incredible volunteer leaders, and the folks we’ve been speaking to are really excited to be a part of this--they’re with us all the way to 2012.

    A big part of our efforts has been our barbershop and beauty salons program. We’ve been reaching out to owners and managers in towns across the state, talking to them about the campaign and leaving “I’m In” cards and voter registration forms for their customers to pick up and fill out while they’re getting their hair done. It’s been a great exercise in spreading the campaign’s message through word of mouth.

    Our summer organizers have been a key part of setting up the barbershop and beauty salons program and building out the organization across the state. They’ve really helped to rejuvenate our efforts by making phone calls, holding one-on-ones, and organizing in communities we wouldn’t otherwise have reached. One of our summer organizers, John, has turf that’s very rural and sparsely populated, and thanks to his work with this program the campaign has taken off there in a way we never imagined possible.

    Although the Summer Organizer Program is coming to an end, it’s not farewell. Many of these new organizers are staying on as neighborhood team leaders or volunteers, continuing to put their newfound skills to good use. And we’re looking forward to training a whole new group of rookie organizers when the fall fellows start in September.

    There’s always more to do, more people to call, more supporters to meet, more events to organize. If you’re in South Carolina, we’d love for you to get involved. Just call the campaign HQ at 803-799-7798, and one of us will get back to you.

    Wherever you are in the country, you can get involved in the campaign by signing up here.