Young Dems learn grassroots organizing

Asha Marie is a member of the Young Democrats of Greenville County. She and 19 others attended the organizing training on Jan. 20. This is her report.

By Asha Marie

The Greenville Young Democrats Community Organizing Training was successful beyond what we could have hoped for as a chapter!

The Greenville Young Democrats and the South Carolina Democratic Party hosted a Community Organizing training to learn from trainers Terri Jowers and Scott Thorpe about community organizing and how to engage and mobilize your neighborhood, your city, your state, and your country for change.

Different people from the Greenville community came together to learn how to enact the change that is so desperately needed for the marginalized and impoverished communities that are too often ignored.

I grew up here in Greenville. My family has lived on the West Side for generations. I know the moral imperative of getting people engaged because I’ve seen the need. I’ve seen it in the lives of the families forced out of their neighborhoods because the powers that be will not stop the onslaught of gentrification. I’ve seen it in the disenfranchised who cannot get to medical appointments or job interviews or training programs because the county does not view public transportation as a priority. I’ve seen in the the stories of too many whose interactions with law enforcement show the desperate need of police reform here.

It’s communities like the one my family lived in for generations that are often not the focus of media attention or crowded rallies that are most neglected in our politics and, to be honest, by our party. That has to change. We can’t be content with being the lesser of two evils. We have to be the party the people deserve.

Frederick Douglas once said: “Power never concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” He was right.

That’s why I am so grateful for everyone who came to learn how to organize in their own communities. They realized it’s not just about them. It’s about giving a voice to the voiceless. It’s about giving hope to the hopeless.

Greenville needs change. It needs those willing to fight for that change. Our Community Organizing training and those organizing give me hope that a better day is just on the horizon.