The prevailing discourse on organizing, people power, and collective action is usually discouraging. Leaders of movements and campaigns, along with their work and efforts, are undermined, sometimes even by those closest to them.The negative discourse has various reasons behind it, including expressions of frustration in marginalized societies and interventions by those in power to maintain the status quo.

While building individuals’ capacities to organize their power and resources for change is crucial, a discouraging narrative always attempts to push them in the opposite direction, diminishing the efficacy of taking action and people’s ability to bring about change. Therefore, Ahel invests time, effort, and resources to change this narrative. We produce knowledge products about organizing and continuously share success stories of campaigns to serve as an inspiring example of people’s capacity for the cause.

Challenging this narrative is a shared responsibility for everyone who believes in collective action and works towards change, so we began working with organizers in early 2023 to influence this narrative themselves. We invited a group of leaders from our community and started designing and implementing the “People Power Narrative” campaign together. The goal is to change the narrative about collective action’s value, efficacy, and necessity. Ideally, the narrative should support and encourage the collective action of those defending their rights. The campaign has laid out its initial phase, focusing on working with the campaign community, developing visual and written products to support this effort, and using them in early 2024 as tools in collective tactics to influence and change the narrative on people power.

Examples of our work for the People's Power Narrative in 2023 include:
  1.  “Ahel Wa Qadiah” (People and the Cause) Interview Series: A series of interviews on Radio Al-Balad in Jordan, consisting of five episodes, introducing the effectiveness of the community organizing approach in achieving change. Conversations with leaders of various campaigns in Jordan illustrate the impact of organizational tactics.
  1. “Athar” (Impact) Podcast Season 2: With 15 episodes and campaign stories from the Arab world, this podcast highlights the journeys of leaders fighting for their rights, making an impact, and influencing change in their causes. The episodes accumulated a listenership of over 11,000 plays. The second season features a special episode recorded during a regional campaigns forum, focusing on narrating the experiences of people power.
  1. Case Study on the “La Tkabrouna Badna Zghar” (Let Us Keep Our Childhood) Campaign: In its second edition, the study documents the experiences and lessons learned from the campaign journey. It covers the campaign’s stages of work from late 2019 to 2022 and highlights its ability to expand and persist.
  1. Case Study on the “Qom Ma Al Mualem” (Stand Up with the Teacher) Campaign: Answering the question of how much the campaign changed the reality of private sector teachers in Jordan, the study analyzes power dynamics and reads the campaign’s impact in changing those dynamics. A translated version of the case study will be available soon.
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