How to Organize Your First Group Planning Meeting

There’s no right number of participants for your first meeting. It might be you and your roommates in the living room or it might be you and a few dozen other activists. Get started today and let your group grow to match your ambition!

Prepare for Your Meeting

  • Designate a meeting space and time. Most student groups have free access to meeting space on their campus. Check out your campus’ rules for reserving a room.
  • Advertise. Use social media, listservs of existing student groups, or flyers in high-traffic areas (e.g. student centers or cafeterias) to let people know that you’re meeting to organize against the Trump agenda.
  • Print out sign-in sheets. Sample sign-in sheets are available here.
  • Develop a focused, concrete idea for immediate action. It might be a visit your MoC’s district office the following week or a phone bank to call your MoC’s office from campus. Having a plan before your group’s meeting will allow you to recruit meeting attendees to participate and leave them with a simple and concrete objective they can share with friends that weren’t able to attend. Check your MoC’s public schedule of events to see if they have any town halls or ribbon cuttings scheduled near you.

Running Your Meeting

  • Welcome everyone and outline the goals for the meeting, including: getting to know one another, committing to the values that will guide your work over the coming months and years, and planning and committing to engaging in your first day of action.
  • Allow time for brief introductions. We love icebreakers in situations like this, and a couple of good ones to get your meeting started are: What motivated you to attend this meeting today? What issue are you most upset about with the Trump Administration?
  • Discuss the values that will guide your group’s work. We recommend two guiding principles for all groups organizing to implement the strategy in the Indivisible guide:
  1. Donald Trump’s agenda will take America backwards and must be stopped.
  2. In order to work together in the pursuit of this goal, we must model the values of inclusion, respect, and fairness at all times.
  • Commit to a specific time, date, and action for the following week that your group can accomplish together.
  • Name your group! A good place to start is with your university’s name (e.g. The University of Arkansas Stands Indivisible).
  • Video and pictures or it didn’t happen. Forming a group is in part about demonstrating that the resistance is lively and active. For people—including your MoCs—who aren’t able to come to your meeting, you need to demonstrate that you are a real thing. Don’t tell them, show them—short videos and pictures make it real.

Next Steps After Your First Meeting

  • Follow up. Organize an email list or Slack channel from the sign-in sheet you brought to the meeting. Thank your new group members for attending and remind them about your upcoming event.
  • Establish an online presence. Create a Facebook group, Twitter account, and whatever other digital media will help you communicate with your members and the rest of the campus going forward.
  • Register your chapter as a student organization. If you haven’t already done so, this will give you access to free meeting space and student organization funding. It will also make it easier for you to recruit more members on your campus.
  • Register the group at IndivisibleGuide.com. It takes about 5 minutes (it’s free of course), and it will get you signed up for our weekly action alerts and special access to toolkits like this one and other training opportunities. It’s also a great way to advertise your group and events to recruit more members—we get between 100,000 and 200,000 pageviews a day, and we’ve had millions of searches for groups and events.