Ideas for community-based climate justice workshops

Gallery Tour

Supplies needed:

This can be done using quotes or photographs, which relate to the topic of your workshop.

Set up:

Tape your quotes to the walls

Process:
  1. Ask participants to walk around and read the quotes you’ve taped to the wall;
  2. Ask participants to select a quote/image they particularly like;
  3. Back in the group, participants talk about which quotes/images they like and why

Timeline (Personal, Local, or Global)


Supplies needed:

Sticky notes, markers or pens, and a large piece of paper

Set up:

Draw one or two lines on a large piece of paper (horizontally). If two lines, make sure they run parallel to each other and allow room for sticky notes between the two lines

Process:
  1. Distribute sticky notes;
  2. Ask participants to jot down significant historical events (international, national, local, or personal), which are relevant to your topic (e.g. social justice);
  3. Have participants place their notes in the timeline;
  4. Encourage participants to observe, discuss, and clarify events;
  5. Facilitator jots down events which need double-checking

Note: This could be used by an organization, institution, or community to identify major events in their history and to celebrate their accomplishments. You may choose to colour code events (e.g. particularly oppressive times, etc)

Self-organizing sticky notes

Supplies needed:

Flip chart paper, poster or bulletin board

Set up:

Tape a piece of flip chart paper to the wall and draw columns

Process:
  1. Ask participants to get into groups of 2 or 3;
  2. Distribute sticky notes;
  3. Have participants name and discuss issues which they are passionate about and believe in;
  4. Ask participants, one by one, to stick their papers under columns (which you will have drawn ahead of time). If issues are similar or relate to each other, place them under the same column;
  5. After all participants have had a turn, rearrange the columns and name them according to themes;
  6. Whichever column has the most sticky notes becomes the group’s focus, or first project

Political Weather Report

Supplies needed:

Sticky notes

Set up:

Draw the following diagram on a large piece of paper and tape it to the wall. You may choose to write “personal,” “regional,” and “national” (each in concentric circles on chart, as demonstrated below), instead of “global,” “national,” and “local.” You may also have a neutral or undecided wedge.

 

Political Weather Report

Political Weather Report

Process:
  1. In partners, ask participants to write down events/trends/things that HELP the issue/topic of discussion and events/trends/things that HURT the issue;
  2. When finished, ask participants to post their sticky notes in the appropriate wedge of the political weather report

Note: This exercise can be done directly after “self-organizing sticky notes.” If this is the case, then the group’s chosen focus, would go in the centre of the political weather report.

Action Analysis Chart

Supplies needed:

Markers, masking tape, flip chart

Set up:

Draw the following chart on one or more pieces of flip chart paper.

Action Analysis Chart

Action Analysis Chart

 Process:
  1. Explain to participants that this chart will be used to generate specific action ideas or “next steps for action;”
  2. Write down the main long-term goal (e.g. reducing poverty in Ontario) of your analysis, which your group will have discussed and selected ahead of time and which will be analyzed by the group for the purpose of identifying key action steps;
  3. Short-term goals could come from a collective brainstorming session, or the facilitator could suggest a few short-term goals that he or she feels represent the group’s interests (e.g. participating in government consultations for a poverty reduction strategy);
  4. Write down the short-term goals the group has come up with on the flip chart
  5. Form small groups of about 3 to 5 people each. You may allow participants to vote and choose a chart with a short-term goal which they favour;
  6. They can start their analysis by listing things which “support” or “hinder” the short-term goal. Emphasize that these are things which they already know about. If a participant wishes to list something which he or she is unsure of, which neither hinders or supports the short-term goal (as far as they know), he or she may post it under the middle column “unknown/uncommitted;”
  7. After the groups have worked for about 20 minutes, ask them to think about the last level of the chart: ACTION. Urge them to think about and identify steps they can take based on the things they’ve written/posted above;
  8. For the report back, ask each group to report on their action steps;
  9. It is often the case that this exercise will generate several action steps, which means that the group will need to prioritize and select which items to tackle first