Organize!

In our Organize! columns we explore various lessons in organizing strategies and tactics, going beyond the outside story of a campaign to look at how it worked or what lessons it might have to teach us.

Tenderloin Senior Organizing Project

"It's hard to do this – I was scared," said Robin King, one of the younger women living in a building organized by the...

Big Island Organizing

An organizing drive in Hawaii has forced the hand of America's largest bank, achieving a breakthrough that has slashed foreclosures.

Vertical Integration

When Vickie Stapleton’s landlord announced his intention to terminate his project-based Section 8 contract with HUD last year, she got nervous. “A lot of...

Fighting for Worker's Rights in Maine

Years of alleged wage, immigration, safety, and civil rights violations, environmental sanctions, and other infractions at the DeCoster egg farm in Turner, Maine, have...
A woman in a red Cause Justa/Just Cause T-shirt holds a hand-lettered sign reading "Black and Brown for Tenant Protections Now"

Black and Brown Tenant Solidarity in Oakland

Last October, Oakland, Calif., passed a Tenant Protection Ordinance. This strong measure defending tenants against the kinds of landlord harassment that often take place...

Philadelphia Campaign Reshapes Homelessness Debate

For the past few years, homeless advocates in Philadelphia have made some remarkable strides in pushing for solutions to homelessness. Several distinct but overlapping...
A man, who is surrounded by people holding signs, speaks at a podium in in New York.

Moving Beyond Place-Based Community Organizing

How to train organizers to work across various communities, not just neighborhoods.

Homeless Revolution

An organization of homeless New Yorkers rallied residents of Harlem and Manhattan to stand up and take notice of the city's long-standing practice of warehousing vacant properties.

From Brooklyn to Berlin: Organizing Schoeneweide

The scene looks familiar enough. In a foyer outside an elegant legislative chamber, a group of citizens is pigeonholing their local politicians. A vote...

Gaining Ground by Holding Back

Late last year, St. Louis ACORN members learned that Regional Hospital – the city's only "safety net" hospital that guaranteed care regardless of ability...

Putting “Community” Back in “CRA”

The Community Reinvestment Act and regulators have been unable to hold banks accountable to distant and distinct local communities—so nonprofits have stepped in to do the heavy lifting.

Patience and Politics

State education departments are always looking for ways to improve low-performing schools, and not always finding them. In 1992, the Texas Education Agency agreed...
Three members of the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California give a thumbs up as they hold "Register and Vote" signs in different languages.

How the Bay Area Got $2 Billion for Affordable Homes

San Francisco Bay Area voters approved bold new investments in 2016 after housing advocates--part of the Non-Profit Housing Association of Northern California--ignited a successful electoral strategy for the general election. Here's how it worked.

Demanding a Better Deal

Save Middle East Action Committee (SMEAC) was created in 2001 by community stakeholders and representatives in Baltimore after the local newspaper announced that they...

Grassroots Advocacy Strengthens Housing Trust Fund

Washington state housing activists came together in 1997 to launch the  Housing Our Community Campaign to increase the state Housing Trust Fund (HTF) to...