Host Toolkit

Thank you so much for signing up to host an event in your community! There’s no better way to help elect MJ Hegar as our next Senator than to bring people together in your neighborhood to take action. We’ve put together this toolkit to help you get started, and we’ll be here every step of the way if you have any questions. Don’t hesitate to reach out via Slack or email: [email protected].

Contents

  1. Types of Events
  2. Creating Your Event
  3. Managing RSVPs
  4. Materials

Types of Events

The sky is the limit when it comes to planning your event, but here’s some inspiration for types of events volunteers can host in their communities:

Host a Canvass

Before: 

  1. Read through our Canvass Toolkit to get familiar with the process!
  2. Choose a location for your canvass kickoff. This could be your home, or outside a recognizable landmark. You’ll want to find a quieter spot where you can talk people through the script, and train your volunteers on canvassing best practices.
  3. Make your invite link (more on this below!)
  4. Remind people to bring a charged phone and to wear comfortable clothes. (The campaign can’t provide paper lists or phones for volunteers, so each person will need to bring a smartphone or tablet to use MiniVAN)
  5. Optional: print out the Script, MiniVAN 1-pager,  and MJ Literature for your canvassers.

During: 

  1. Sign everyone in using MobilizeAmerica or a paper sign-in sheet.
  2. Tell everyone to download ‘MiniVAN Touch’ by going to their app store. Make sure everyone is able to log into MiniVAN with their ActionID or is able to create a new ActionID.
  3. Hand out materials and read through the script with everyone, making sure to highlight important details. Show how to tag survey responses so we get the data from these conversations and use the branched script.
  4. Take a group photo before everyone goes to find their nearest set of 30 doors! Tell them what time they need to return to sync the data and debrief at the end. 
  5. Meet back at your spot to touch base. Make sure to remind people how important syncing the data is!

After:

  1. Enter your sign-in data into MobilizeAmerica 
  2. Send a thank you email/text to the people who came. Follow up with the folks who weren’t able to make it.
  3. Do the same all over again!

Key Materials:

Host a Phonebank

Before:

  1. Read through our Phonebanking Toolkit to get familiar with the process!
  2. Choose a location for your phonebank. This could be your home, a coffee shop etc. Just make sure there’s internet access, and that you’ll be allowed to make noise, but there’s not too much background noise!
  3. Make your event! (more below)
  4. Remind people to bring their own phones and laptops/tablet and chargers.
  5. Optional: print out the Script for your phonebankers.

During:

  1. Sign everyone in using MobilizeAmerica or a paper sign-in sheet.
  2. Read through the script with everyone, and highlight important details. Explain how & why we tag survey responses to get the data from these conversations. Pair everyone up so they can practice with each other before they officially begin.
  3. Once you’re all ready to get started, have everyone log into OpenVPB and make sure they’re able to access the list using the code. 
  4. Check in with folks to make sure they’re getting the hang of it, and then start making calls yourself!

After:

  1. Enter your sign-in data into MobilizeAmerica. 
  2. Send a thank you email/text to the people who came. Follow up with the folks who weren’t able to make it.
  3. Do the same all over again! 

Key Materials:

Host a Community Event

  • Community Meetings: One of the best ways you can help our campaign is by hosting a community meeting. Maybe you decide to have a table or take clipboards to an existing event, have a happy hour, or run a workshop to teach people to tell their personal stories — the goal is to bring people together and talk to people about MJ.
  • Watch Parties: MJ will be taking the debate stage on Tuesday February 18th (the same day Texans start voting)! If you’d rather just watch MJ, we recommend this hour-long interview with the Texas Tribune. Inviting people to watch MJ speak for herself is a great way to bring new people into the campaign!
  • Discussion Nights: If you’d rather spend more time talking than watching, you could host a themed discussion night! Whether it’s a ‘Policy & Pizza Party’ or a book-club style night about the issues that matter to you (or even reading MJ’s book!), connecting with your neighbors on policy is a great way to introduce people to MJ.

Creating Your Event

  • Choose a date and start time for your event: Keep in mind the dates and times when the most people will be available, and be sure to choose a time that allows people to mingle and settle in before jumping right into your event.
  • Choosing a location: Your home, a public library, coffee shop, college campus, or dorm room are all great places to host events! Three things to keep in mind when choosing a location:
    • How many people do you expect to attend? Will you have enough space?
    • Is the space suitable for your activity? You’ll need a quieter spot for a phone bank, a place with a screen if you’re having a watch party, etc.
    • Is it easy to find? Is it ADA accessible?
  • Post your event online: Fill in the form below to get the link to create your event online so guests can easily RSVP. Follow the directions on the page to create your event. After your event is approved, you’ll be able to edit it, invite people, and track who’s coming.
  • Promote your event: Feel free to share your event with your friends and family on social media! If you want your event to be private–don’t worry, just be sure the box at the bottom of the page (“Yes, show my event in the search results”) isn’t checked before publishing.

Managing RSVPs

  • Once the event is ready to go, it’s time to invite guests! Make sure to blast the invite out to your networks, any MJ supporters you know, and any undecided friends you have. Use email, text, phone calls, and social media to promote it–just make sure that you follow up with your attendees to make sure they come!
  • Don’t forget that if you make your event “public” the campaign will help invite supporters too!
  • We also have a slide deck below on how to use MobilizeAmerica to keep track of your RSVPs, communicate with your guests, and sign them in at your event.

Materials

We’ve put together some optional materials for you to use for your events. We’ve got a paper sign-in sheet, signs to put up so guests know they’re in the right place, and a policy sheet you can hand out. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask in Slack or via email at [email protected]

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