Political Action and Protest

Volunteer activity focused on influencing legislators, educating the public, and getting media attention for any type of cause.

The Choice of the Citizen: Pay Taxes, Do Without, or Volunteer, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2011
A Decade In, Twitter Is the Real-Time Pulse of Nonprofit Advocacy, Tom Watson, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, 2016
From Organizing Charity to Building Community, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2008
Give Volunteers a Voice, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 1998
Government, Politicians, and the Use of the Word "Volunteer", Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2004
Lessening Social Exclusion through Volunteering, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 1999
NetActivism, Ed Schwartz, NetActivism, pp. 17-18, O'Relly & Associate, Inc, 1996
The Perfect Volunteer Storm, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2012
Philanthropy, Civic Engagement, and the Lessons of Volunteering, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 1999
Political Campaigns: Epicenter of Volunteering, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2016
Tackling Causes Not Symptoms: New/Old Roles for Volunteers, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2001
Volunteering Is Inherently Political, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2012
Volunteers Should Not Be Second-Class Taxpayers, Susan J. Ellis, Energize Hot Topic, 2008

Based on an oral history project in Belast, Volunteer NOW and VSB Beldast present a history of volunteering in Belfast, Northern Ireland through personal remembrances of dozens of volunteers and several historians. Show how volunteering for peace and reconciliaton during that city's "Troubles" between 1968 and 1998, it gives insight social activism.

, 2010, pp. 162

CNIB offers this manual for people who would like to learn how to advocate in support of causes that matter to them. While it has been written for CNIB volunteers, it can be used by anyone who simply wants to understand how advocacy works and how to apply advocacy best practices in support of any cause of their choosing.  The manual, which can be downloaded in Word for free, is accompanied by a Toolkit and an Advocacy Program Training Guide.

, 2017
By American University's Center for Social Media about how an online youth civic culture, largely unnoticed by the general public, has taken root on the Internet and is fostering Generation Y's participation in U.S. politics and community affairs. , 2004, pp. 155

"A place to discuss and dissect the successes, failures, and practices of online activism." Micro-volunteering actions for "digital campaigning, one click at a time."

Community Toolbox

The Community Tool Box offers over 7,000 free pages of practical guidance on essential skills for building healthy communities for people working to make a difference. The resources are organized by: 1) Learn a Skill (training in specific skills of community work); 2) Plan the Work (Toolkits outline tasks, examples, and supports for 16 core competencies); 3) Solve a Problem ("Troubleshooting Guides" for common challenges, questions for analysis, and links); 4) Use Promising Approaches (Evidence, examples, and links); and 5) Connect with Others (Learn from others by asking an advisor and finding other online resources).

CrimethInc. Ex-Workers' Collective

Provides guides and a forum for protestors and anarchists to support acting on one's strong beliefs.

DoSomething.org Blog

All about young people (teens and 20-somethings) and social change.

Grassroots Activism

See how the National Rifle Association's Grassroots Division encourages its members to organize at the local level -- be prepared to see some familiar suggestions.


Site of the organization run by a handful of paid staff and countless volunteers who rallied anti-Bush forces in the last election. While there are few specific tools online, everything MoveOn does is geared to mobilize activists -- a great model for managing virtual volunteering.

National Network for Collaboration Training

Devoted to "the goal of community collaboration,...to bring individuals and members of communities, agencies and organizations together in an atmosphere of support to systematically solve existing and emerging problems that could not be solved by one group alone. Offers a variety of tools, self-training materials, and more to support community collaborative efforts.

Pathways to Participation: What creates and sustains active citizenship?

Pathways through Participation was a two-and-a-half year qualitative research project in the UK led by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) in partnership with the Institute for Volunteering Research (IVR) and Involve that ended in 2011. However, the research reports remain online for free download and with occasional updates. 


An introduction and portal to activism, education, community involvement, and social change, with guides and courses on "How to Be an Activist."

United for Libraries Resources for Friends Groups

Free toolkits, promotional materials, and other resources -- including a :Pwer Guide to Successful Library Advocacy" for Friends groups of all types, sizes, and level of activity. 

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