Organizing Effective Actions

The following resources will help you organize effective actions. While all of these are also included in various training agendas, it is important for the organizers to understand them in order to prepare for trainings and actions.
  1. The video Nashville: We Were Warriors and the workshop Learning from the Nashville Lunch Counter Sit-in Campaign Agenda: are inspiring and helpful resources.  More information on the Planning Nonviolent Campaigns page.
  2. The Affinity Groups and Consensus Decision-Making sections of the Handbook for Nonviolent Action
  3. Legal support includes tasks to do before and during an action as well as after arrests. The Legal Issues/Risking Arrest/Representing Yourself sections of the Handbook for Nonviolent Action include a helpful Legal Systems Flowchart which can be downloaded as a handout. Another version of the flowchart is here. Share information about legal rights, like National Lawyers Guild's Know Your Rights, and Know Your Rights: A Guide for Protesters
  4. Action evaluation | This section allows us to learn from our experiences and is important to strengthen out campaigns.


Organizers should work with nonviolence trainers

Nonviolence training helps prepare participants for effective nonviolent actions.

Organizers + trainers need to work together to make sure that trainings meet the need of those being trained. See Tasks and Tools for organizing a training to prepare!

Match tactics for a specific action with the campaign objectives.

The Matrix exercise is a helpful tool when group has not fully decided on action plans.

The Cross spectrum can help a group determine what is effective nonviolent action and to develop a nonviolent action scenario.



These resources on the Nonviolent Action pages include links to specific handouts, exercises and resources. Additional resources are available in a number of handbooks. 
The contents of Handbook for Nonviolent Campaigns (2009) can be found online here and a paperback version can be purchased on our Store.  Manual para Campañas Noviolentas is available here.

The manuscript for the Handbook for Nonviolent Campaigns (2014), which includes 50 additional pages, can be downloaded here, can be purchased in our Store, and all the sections are on Empowering Nonviolence along with other resources. 

The Handbook for Nonviolent Action (1989), a 34 page booklet first printed in 1989,  can be purchased on our Store, and can be found at the Digital Library of Nonviolent Resistance at the Rutgers International Institute for Peace.