Revolution #267, May 1, 2012
Tips and Details for Phone Banking to Raise $20,000 for the Next Leg of the BAsics Bus Tour,
Part of BA Everywhere! Imagine the Difference It Will Make!
This accompanies the BusTour-ScriptFlowChart.doc
The phone script shouldn't be read word for word but is the orientation for the phone banking. People should familiarize themselves with this so they can give a good sense of this without reading the script word for word. It may also be good to reread, and keep handy, the first editorial in Revolution newspaper on BA Everywhere mass fundraising campaign (found at the top of revcom.us/BAfundcampaign and in Revolution #249).
Five tips for phone banking:
- Assign a team captain.
- The team captain will: need to prepare what is needed for the phone banking get-together, will need to prepare an orientation, and will need to consolidate phone/contact lists or make sure that they are prepared in advance of the get-together. (On average you will talk to one person for every seven you call so try to have about 70 numbers for each person doing phone banking.) Make enough copies of the script and the forms to fill out as you talk to people. Also, make sure you have a working phone for each person making calls, and a charger in case it runs out of batteries.
|RV and travel expenses:||
|[RV, gas, food, and lodging]|
|[projector, sound, and printed materials]|
THE TOUR WILL BE POSTING REGULAR UPDATES AT basicsbustour.tumblr.com
What happened during the pilot launch of the tour:
"A successful pilot launch of this tour was done in California in February. It spent two weeks going from southern to northern California, reaching tens of thousands of people from diverse areas, and introducing them to BAsics. They spent time on college campuses, homeless encampments, high schools, a swap meet and more. They had discussions at local bookstores and were invited into people's homes to have deep and wide ranging discussions about Avakian's work and what's concentrated in BAsics – the essential questions of revolution and human emancipation. This time around, they'll also be joining with those fighting the power and engaging in debate and discussion with people who agree, disagree, or who just want to find out more. The crew on this tour will be learning from people and giving them an opportunity to be part of the campaign to get out BA Everywhere. And all this together can reverberate back into the world at large, taking all this even higher."
How can people donate:
Contribute generously towards the $20,000 needed, and as part of this, contribute airfare miles or credits. Online donations with a credit card can be made at thebobavakianinstitute.org. Checks or money orders can be made payable to The Bob Avakian Institute or The BA Institute and mailed to 1016 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60607. Right now, contributions can only be solicited and accepted from residents of the following states: California, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Nevada, New York, Texas, Vermont, Washington, Wyoming. If you are interested but in a different state or want to contribute online, contributions can be made payable to RCP Publications at revcom.us or sent to PO Box 3486, Merchandise Mart, Chicago, IL 60654. Please be aware that The Bob Avakian Institute is not tax exempt and donations made to it are not tax deductible.
OR you can arrange to have someone pick up their cash donation, or they can drop it off at Revolution Books.
The whole tour will cost at least $20,000, which breaks down to $1,400 to sponsor a volunteer.
If someone declines, we should find out why. You might be able to explore other things they might be able to do, like CONTRIBUTING AIRLINE MILES, following the tour and helping to build support in other ways.
If they say they do not have money right now, let them know they can give as little as $10 and that will make a big difference. They can also make in-kind contributions of air miles or credits.
If someone says yes, thank them. Also, ask if they have friends who might also be interested. Or if there are other ways they can help.
If they want to think about it, ask them when you can call them back.
In all this, the more concrete you both are in this conversation, the more real your plan and their commitment becomes. Also make sure you share the plan to raise the money: nights that we are phone banking, the Kick-Off event for the bus tour at Revolution Books on Friday, May 18, where they can follow the bus tour (at basicsbustour.tumblr.com), and other events to keep in touch with the bus during its trip. Do they have any ideas of how they can contribute or participate? You'll need a schedule of the local plans, with a list of ways they can contribute and where to connect. You may also want to email them this as a follow up off the call.
[Depending on how much time they have in the call, you may also want to learn what they're thinking about the big events in the world overall…]
A good goal for the phone calls is to end the conversation with a plan, and make sure we follow up with people around the results.
If people want to know the exact route of the tour, let them know it's still being determined but that it's heading out from Atlanta and "going right into the thick of the struggle in a particularly hot area in this country." They should make sure to sign up for Revolution newspaper for updates and check in regularly at basicsbustour.tumblr.com.
If someone wants to learn more, we recommend making use of the short film Next Stop... Revolution. They can find this on youtube by searching the title. This conveys powerfully what it can open up to project Avakian's revolutionary vision and works into society. Also, they can check out the reports and photos from the pilot launch of the bus tour at basicsbustour.tumblr.com. If they're not familiar with Avakian, we recommend sending them links to clips from Avakian's Revolution talk – perhaps the "Emmett Till, Jim Crow... Black People Lived Under a Death Sentence" and one of the "Imagine a New Society" clips. These can be found at youtube.com/revolutiontalk.
Quotes about the tour which you can feel free to draw on:
"[The BAsics bus tour] cut through people's daily existence of whatever sort of thing they were thinking about. It's not like people didn't have opinions on things. But…this was something they'd never seen before, an RV fully decorated with BAsics, the front and back covers in English and Spanish. You had music, you had these multicultural people stepping off these buses and very alive with revolution, alive with a vision of a new world... It was something unexpected, it was something very new, but it was also something very welcome."
– a young tour participant
"Questions get raised every day about stuff like this but people don't talk about it."
– a city college student in Fresno
"A man from Mexico City who had bought Lo BAsico…commented on the sections that impressed him: about religion, seizing power, and learning about the experience of socialism. 'These are big solutions to big problems.' He said we needed to reach out more to youth, to the schools, that this book 'has to be brought to people around the world.'"
– from a report from the tour volunteers
"When the bus rolls down the street, heads turn. One woman said, it 'stopped me in my tracks!'"
– report from tour volunteers in Riverside, CA
- Volunteer to join the tour. If they are interested in this, make sure you note this, and if they're in the city you're calling from, maybe set up a time to talk with them more or let someone you're working with know they were interested.
- Volunteer! All kinds of assistance is needed from wherever people are at and with whatever time they can contribute: help with press work and internet promotions (both urgently needed now), video editing (for short videos from the tour while it's on the road), and more. If they are interested, again take note of this and let them know someone will get back to them, or they can write directly to email@example.com.
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