In 2018, I had the honour and privilege to serve as a campaign manager for my beloved childhood friend, Rowa Mohamed, a community organizer based in London, Ontario.
Frustrated with the lack of diverse, working class representation in civic leadership, we decided to run a municipal campaign in our hometown.
Rowa’s campaign focused on affordable public housing, transit, and community vitality.
Together, we put a team together of engaged youth of diverse backgrounds and life experiences. Our team mobilized over 30 youth to participate in door-to-door canvassing.
With a team of multilingual volunteers, we successfully communicated with otherwise marginalized constituents. We focused our efforts on advocating folks living in public housing and apartments who face voter suppression.
Our get-out-the-vote strategy focused on accessibility. In collaboration with members of the Sudanese community, taxi drivers volunteered to drive voters to the polls on Election Day.
Although we didn’t win the election, I found my experience of leading and engaging with marginalized members of our community to be empowering. Seeing faces light up when our team members spoke to constituents in their mother tongue was unforgettable. Our intimate understandings of cultural conventions allowed us to problem solve creatively. Limited funding and expertise didn’t stop us from running a fruitful campaign. We organized WhatsApp groups and had information translated in various languages for more effective communication with our constituents. I am proud to have served our community with my beloved sister, Rowa.