Cesar Hernandez brings years of organizing experience to his role on the Foundation’s Grants Review Committee. From his early days working with CAUSE and California Rural Legal Assistance, he is now Senior Organizer for the Center for Community Change—a national social movement organization. In between trips around the county guiding economic justice campaigns, Cesar sat down to share some words of wisdom.
McCune Foundation:How do organizers build trust in a community?
Cesar Hernandez:Organizing is about connections with people. You think you can just send an email and a thousand people will show up? No, it takes relationships, conversations, accountability. You have to be genuine in your desire to be in a relationship. Dig deeper about what it is that motivates someone.
McCune Foundation:Why is community organizing an effective approach to change?
Cesar Hernandez:Community organizing not only changes an issue, it transforms people. It’s about building power for leaders and individuals so they can act together. Let decision makers know you are a force to be reckoned with.