My personal journey from a PR firm to campaigning cross borders
28 APR 2020
A word from our Campaign Manager, Laura, on her story from being a member of NOW! to working full time:
The members of NOW! have a few things in common: they believe that there are global problems and that the only way to solve them is to work together across borders, they have a burning desire to start acting and are passionate about meeting people from all over the world, and they have probably followed Colombe and Andrea before and were struck by their desire to do something different. These were the reasons why when NOW! launched, I did not think about it twice and I decided to become a member. What NOW! proposed at its launch was something really important - working across borders to find global solutions. This was a really pivotal aspect to me, as I really believe that there are many issues at the moment that cannot be solved by countries individually. Throughout my academic years I have focused on issues, such as the refugee crisis, that have made me realise the huge gap that there is finding appropriate solutions at the global level. This has been even more highlighted by the current pandemic and the unpreparedness of leaders to think of global solutions, given that the virus does not stop at borders in the same way that climate change doesn’t. What NOW! does is to fill that gap - to advance common solutions in the form of legislation everywhere in the world.
NOW! came to life at the perfect time – as an Italian who has been living in London for over six years, knowing that we were coming everyday closer to Brexit created in me a sense of wanting to actively do something more. London – and the wider United Kingdom – have gone through a life-changing event which has impacted everyone’s life, but even more so, the lives of the many foreigners who have felt unwelcome in the past few years. For those foreigners, like me, NOW! is a symbol of hope.
The first month as a member of NOW! was extremely exciting and I felt part of something bigger straight away. The passion that Colombe and Andrea have in their eyes is so motivating and inspiring, so I knew that I really wanted to get as involved as possible. At the beginning, it was the exciting escape time of my day: I was actively working on the women’s rights campaign demanding parity in politics, and couldn’t go an entire day without checking my phone 10 times to see the updates.
Little did I know it wouldn’t stop there. Straight away, I started working on opening a local team with the help and support of two amazing members, Elena and Martina. Together, we started organising local events and pushing the campaigns at the local level: NOW! is based on the idea of thinking globally, and acting locally. Quickly, this power team we created almost became a second family to me. We have checked on each other during this lockdown, we have done live Friday drinks and we have organised weekly calls to ensure that we still see each other in a way or another, despite being from all over the world in quarantine.
For all these reasons, when I applied for and finally got offered the job as Campaign Manager at NOW, I couldn’t be happier. It has now been just over three weeks since I have joined full time and I am lucky enough to work with members every day. Being able to work with members and local campaigners feeds my passion to work on our campaigns. During a recent members’ online event, someone said that being part of NOW! “it feels like you are doing something real, and issues become relevant when you manage to connect with people and have lots of individuals joining in from different countries to focus on the same topics - with NOW! we can really contribute to think of solutions for bigger challenges”.
I strongly believe that having a local team is not only something really unique to NOW!, but a huge advantage on how we can really impact change. In fact, by working with our local teams we make sure that with our campaigns we can think globally but act locally. The issues that we tackle at NOW! are global in nature, meaning that they are faced by most countries, but only by ensuring that we tackle them in our everyday lives, by contacting mayors and other relevant individuals, and can we really see this having an impact. Being part of a local team, or creating one in a new city, is empowering as each of our local campaigners and members is really helping us bring about the impact that we hope for.
Going from being a member, to work full time has really been fantastic – NOW! has all the capacity to be a disruptive and impactful movement, and I am really looking forward to seeing what we can achieve in the future. I know that we will be successful only with the support of our members and local campaigners who believe, as much as we do, in the strength of our campaigns and that can help us push forward NOW! at the local level.
So please, if you are interested in becoming a member and joining our campaigns, go check out our Teams page and if there is no local team next to you, do consider starting one - it is exciting, rewarding and you will meet incredible people along the way!