FF success: perspectives, planning and persistence

Ken Douglas, Socialist Party national treasurer

Socialist Party members and supporters raised over £7,000 in the last few days of the fighting fund campaign, smashing the target with a final total of £26,577.

The fighting fund enables the Socialist Party to finance our day-to-day campaigning work – we have no rich backers and rely on the donations from ordinary working class people and the hard work of our members.

Eight regions achieved over 100% of their target, with the North West topping the table. Regional organiser Hugh Caffrey reported how branches in their region raised over £600 in March to reach 250% of their target and also take the top three places in the branch fighting fund league table.

They planned a ‘Collectathon Week’ towards the end of the quarter, timetabling campaigning stalls to ensure a good turnout and sometimes running a stall for a day or half a day.

They also discussed the main focus of their campaigning; tapping into the anger that working class people feel at the Con-Dem attacks on living standards by highlighting the exploitation and poverty caused by zero-hour contracts and setting out how they can be fought.

Their well-presented campaign stalls clearly show what their campaign is about, with plenty of petitions, leaflets and posters, and they ask everybody who comes up for a donation to the Socialist Party.

To ensure that new members, in particular, feel confident on the stalls they also held a training day as part of the preparation for their Collectathon.

The Socialist Party aims to raise £100,000 in fighting fund every year, divided into four quarterly targets; we now go into the next three months aiming to repeat the success of the first quarter.

There will be plenty of opportunities for campaigning as we go into the local council elections as part of the TUSC coalition, which has already got over 400 candidates committed to standing.

The example of the North West shows that we can not only use those opportunities to promote the idea of a new mass workers’ party, an alternative to the three main capitalist parties who promise only more and deeper cuts to our living standards, but also ensure that we have the resources to build support for a socialist alternative to the corruption and greed of the bankers, the super-rich and their capitalist politicians.