Want to fight for low-income people in a supportive and exciting work environment? Come and work with us!
Application deadline: Sunday 18th February 2024, 11:59pm
Interview date: Friday 23rd February, 2024
Start date: Monday 18th March, 2024
ACORN is looking for a Member Defence Organiser to build power to fight for social and economic change in Birmingham, starting on Monday 18th March 2024.
ACORN is a mass membership organisation and a direct action community union. By taking action on issues that affect us, we win real changes to our lives and our communities. For more information, read our 'About ACORN' page here and the ACORN Platform here.
We’re hosting a ‘Work for ACORN’ zoom call with ACORN organising staff on 31st January, 2024 at 6pm. This call is a great opportunity to find out more about upcoming rolls and to ask current staff any questions about the job and the union. You can register for the call here: Register for the Work for ACORN Zoom call!
About the job
As an Organiser with ACORN, you will be responsible for recruiting, developing and supporting members to take action on issues affecting them and the communities they come from.
Member Defence is a section of our organising in which members come together to support an individual member’s issue through direct action. This could mean stopping evictions, winning housing repairs or safe accommodation for our members, or fighting for fair treatment at work.
Your daily work will involve:
- Recruiting individual ACORN Members through door-knocking, social media and other means (door-knocking takes up around 50% of our organisers’ time)
- Building and maintaining existing ACORN Local Groups and teams
- Identifying, and taking action on, issues that affect our members and their communities
- Identifying, developing and supporting potential leaders, and addressing barriers women might face that might make them less likely to become leaders
- Researching and developing new methods of outreach to recruit women with families and older women who may be more isolated and developing them as leaders
- Supporting elected leaders to enable them to carry out their roles
Why work for ACORN?
ACORN is committed to investing in the continued professional development of our organising staff. All staff are provided with a full week of community organising training when they first start the job, followed by close supervisory support during their probation period to ensure they have the confidence and skills necessary to develop as a community organiser. Regular training sessions are delivered beyond the probationary period in order to promote the continuous personal and professional development of the organising team. We are well known for having the best organising training of any community organisation and you will be well-equipped with all the resources and tools you need to succeed as an organiser.
Testimony from our organisers
"Working for ACORN as an organiser is an empowering and enriching experience. Every day we’re out organising in the community, we’re changing people’s lives, and we ourselves are changed in the process. This is no ordinary job, it’s an opportunity to make a difference in an incredibly nurturing and supportive environment." - Emily, Field Organiser
"As a woman organiser, I’ve been able to play a hugely important role in uplifting women in the organisation. After noticing that the branch I organise had become dominated by men, I created a strategy to develop women members in the group. I organised a Women in Organising training for women members in the branch aimed at building up their confidence and organising skills, and I prioritised getting women to meetings and trainings. As a result, some incredible women members have stepped up and starting taking on leadership in the branch: standing for election, taking on leading roles at actions and planning strategy for our campaigns."- Anna, Member Defence and Field Organiser
"One of my personal highlights of working for ACORN is being part of a member defence case for Sharon, one of our members in Bristol. Sharon had been fighting the council for five years just to get draughts and cold sorted in her house, and got nowhere. One day I knocked her door - she didn't seem keen to chat at first, but once I mentioned housing issues she started explaining her problem to me and we built a rapport. I recruited her to ACORN and we held small meetings in her house with other women members, planning action on the council's head of housing. We ended up winning our demands for better insulation and a professional survey, and it's now noticeably warmer at her house. Just as rewarding for me was the way it built Sharon's confidence, helped build a local ACORN group, and brought together women members. They all had a glass of wine after the win to celebrate!" Em, Field Organiser
No formal qualifications are necessary. We’re primarily looking for someone with a strong work ethic, good listening skills and the ability to motivate others.
For more specific information on the role and its requirements, please refer to the Job Description & Selection Criteria
ACORN is committed to investing in the continued professional development of our organising staff. Please refer to the Job Description and Selection Criteria for information on the training and support you will receive as an ACORN staff member.
This role is a 12 months fixed-term contract, with the view to be extended depending on funding.
£21,840 per annum
28 days plus bank holidays
35 hours a week
Generous holiday allowance, potential for flexi-time, workplace health plan, £100 annual wellbeing bonus, progressive leave policies, extensive trainings and development days (including one week's organiser training) with more to come...
- Make a copy of and complete the full Application Form, referring to the Job Description and Selection Criteria
- Save your completed application form as a PDF with the file name <YOUR NAME, role> e.g. JANE SMITH BirminghamMemberDefenceOrganiser.pdf
- Submit via email to [email protected] with ‘Application: Birmingham Member Defence Organiser’ as the subject line
- Once you have submitted your application please complete this diversity monitoring form
If you require paper versions of this application form & diversity monitoring form please write to [email protected]
The deadline for applications is 11:59pm . Late applications will not be considered. If you have any questions, please contact us at [email protected]
Shortlisted candidates will be invited to an interview, involving two tasks and a Q&A on Friday 23rd February, 2024
ACORN is an equal opportunity employer and values diversity. We are committed to equality of opportunity for all staff and applications from individuals are encouraged regardless of age, disability, sex*, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief and marriage and civil partnerships.
*Except where a protected characteristic is a requirement for the role.