Our organization is years in the making, formed through continued engagement with community organizers, activist activists, political and governmental organizations, and, of course, everyday people in their communities. We are creating a more equitable and sustainable world both today and for the next generation.
Our Founder, Vanessa, has worked tenaciously in advocacy efforts from New York to Massachusetts. For the past couple of months, we all witnessed many raising their voices and taking their frustration and anger to the streets in response to racial injustices. It made Vanessa reflect on our current established policymakers who focus on the constituents that are most likely to vote for them. Often, these policymakers can be one-sided and interest-driven, which leads them to forget what's best for their communities.
Ultimately, new activists and community members need to start the conversation for change. Vanessa has researched past movements and lessons from other activists and came to the conclusion that change is centralized in policy making and hopes to tackle that on for years to come.
As a Lead for America Hometown Fellow, Co-Founder Joe Grochmal saw (and heard) firsthand, the value of listening in public conversations. In the rural community of 7,000 where he served, a lack of data points, missing infrastructure, and time constraints for residents and municipal officials made it difficult for local government to drive the changes the community needed by itself. This had an adverse effect on the quality of policies that were being implemented, and by extension, the public’s trust in local government. Despite this, Joe saw real change take place when community organizers, equipped with accurate information and a keen understanding of the populations that they served, brought ideas and reforms to the government, and presented them in an effective manner. When people listened to each other and to well-informed arguments, positive reforms could be implemented, to the community’s social, economic, and environmental benefit. This experience made Joe realize that providing community organizers with the right tools to understand populations is not simply the right thing to do: it is the necessary thing to do if communities, states, and our country are going to address the greatest challenges of our time.
Bearing these points in mind, Clearstituent seeks to improve the efficiency and capability of local organizers by providing them with the ability to quickly and affordably gather the thoughts of the communities where they serve. Through accurate information and a keen sense of what communities need, we can overcome some of the greatest social, racial, and economic challenges that face us.