Looking Ahead to RootsCamp 2018

June 20, 2017

I’m writing today to tell you about Wellstone’s plans for RootsCamp, the annual progressive unconference. Many of you have written to me to ask how you can get involved, sponsor, or host a session. I wanted to tell you a little bit about how Wellstone is thinking about the future of RootsCamp.
Last year’s convening was an important organizational milestone for us -- we worked for months to put on an unconference that honored the work that came before us, and recognized the tenuous and urgent moment we were in, post-election. Thousands of organizers from all over the country showed up to celebrate, mourn, and strategize together as we built a space where people felt heard, seen, and empowered. After the weekend was over, we spent time as a team debriefing, going over lessons learned, and thinking about what the next RootsCamp might look like.
At Wellstone, we are deeply invested in creating and sustaining spaces that make each of us, and our movement, stronger. The next RootsCamp will be held in 2018 — this shift will allow us to put on the best unconference for our growing community.
We believe that the right cadence for a large-scale gathering like this, one that takes months of preparation and our full-staff engagement, is every other year. This way, we can gather together to reflect on important moments, and scheme for the year to come. We also believe that moving the conference outside of the Beltway changes the conversation. Wellstone is proud to work with folks from across the country, with a deep focus on local and even county-level organizing. We want to make an experience like RootsCamp accessible for all, so we’d like to hear more about where you’d like to travel to in order to participate.
So we invite you to share with us, what do you want RootsCamp 2018 to look like? Tell us what you want to see at RootsCamp 2018. Who do you want to hear from? What do you hope to gain from the weekend? Where do you want it to be held? 
The beauty of RootsCamp is that it’s entirely people-powered, and we want to make sure that our next iteration of RootsCamp reflects what our community wants most.
Fill out this short survey and tell us more about what you’d like to see at RootsCamp 2018.
We’re excited to keep building with you — thank you for all that you do.


Why did Wellstone decide to hold RootsCamp every other year, instead of every year?
After last year’s event, we heard from RootsCamp participants that it felt meaningful, strategic, and useful to align the unconference with electoral cycles. It ensures that folks in the movement can maximize their time in the off-years delivering the work on the ground that we believe builds stronger organizing that deliver victories for our communities. This year, more than ever, we’ve felt the urgency from the community to meet them with more robust and tailored trainings in organizing, data, and digital. We’re going to spend the bulk of 2017 focused on delivering those programs.

I have sponsored/contributed financially to RootsCamp in the past. Is there still a way for me to get involved this year?
Absolutely! Sponsorship at RootsCamp is just one way to give back to Wellstone. Programs like Digital Organizer School and Data Analytics Camp, as well as our flagship organizing training Camp Wellstone, are just three programs that give generous sponsors like you opportunities to support the development of the leaders we most need in our movement right now.

Can I host my own RootsCamp this year if I really want to meet up with people?
We love the energy of our community! While we encourage folks to get together and strategize, any convening that uses the name “RootsCamp” that is not an official Wellstone program is an unauthorized use of the name. If you do host a meet-up or gathering of your own, please be reminded that it is not sponsored or sanctioned by Wellstone.

Focus Areas