At Groundwork Project, we invest year-round in local community organizing. With a primary focus on Appalachia, the Deep South, and the Plains, we play the long game. Day to day, year to year: We show up to help build durable civic and political infrastructure in communities that have been overlooked, excluded and disenfranchised.

Meet our first three partner states. And stay tuned for more!

Alabama

Alabama’s rich political history features some of the most history-changing local organizing of the Civil Rights Era – and some of our nation’s most stark setbacks to justice and equity in the form of white supremacy. Reckoning with this juxtaposition offers a path to durable power-building and progress over the next ten years.

Beginning with the infamous “Southern Strategy” of the 1960s, the conservative movement executed a successful effort to wrestle near-complete political control in Alabama at the local, state, and federal level. They’ve used this power with reckless abandon in recent years, imposing myriad voter suppression tactics, a near-total ban on abortions, and a transgender athlete ban.

Nevertheless there are signs of real opportunity and hope for the road ahead including demographic shifts, a broad base of likely voters committed to a more progressive future, and a vibrant, multi-racial coalition of 501c3 and 501c4 organizations and local political leaders working creatively and collaboratively to execute a long-term plan to undo conservative dominance in the state. Sustained organizing is needed to engage likely voters, listen, and build trust.

Group 3740

In Alabama, Groundwork Project Will:

  • x3

    Invest in local organizers on the ground who are working year-round to engage and educate voters, fight back against right-wing control, and expand progressive power.

  • x3

    Support efforts to create the durable political infrastructure needed to reach likely voters, break a conservative state supermajority and build a diverse voter base that can consistently win statewide.

  • x3

    Partner with organizers, activists, local leaders, and everyday voters in the frontline fights over Alabama’s future, from voting rights to labor rights to racial justice.

Check back soon for updates on our work in Alabama

Group 3711

Mississippi

For all of modern history, Mississippi has been the epicenter of some of our nation’s most consequential fights for voting rights, racial justice and democracy itself.

Today, the legacy of Jim Crow echoes through the politics, public policy, and lived experience of residents in this still deeply segregated state. But there are signs of hope for growing progressive power in the electorate – as evidenced last cycle when voters overwhelmingly passed progressive ballot initiatives to remove the Confederate flag from its state flag and legalize medical marijuana.

With this in mind, local leaders have built on Mississippi’s historic tradition of organizing and advocacy, working over the last five years to create critical infrastructure, develop voter engagement strategies and expand data capacity. But more resources are needed to overcome generations of racial disenfranchisement and build equitable power for all residents.

To counteract the powerful forces of white supremacy and segregation still at play in the state, a deep, sustained, and year-round effort is needed to engage young, Black voters, activate sporadic voters (particularly those in rural areas that have lost faith), and to implement long-term strategic persuasion campaigns aimed at shifting moveable white voters around a more progressive future.

In Mississippi, Groundwork Project Will:

  • x1

    Invest in the local organizers on the ground who are working year-round to engage and educate voters, fight back against right-wing control, and expand progressive power.

  • x1

    Support efforts to develop and execute a long-term plan that will end the systemic political disenfranchisement of Black Mississippians, increase voter participation among young people, in particular, and build a diverse, statewide voting base.

  • x1

    Partner with organizers, activists, local leaders, and everyday voters in the frontline fights over Mississippi’s future, from voting rights to anti-poverty and racial justice.

Check back soon for updates on our work in Mississippi

West Virginia

The premier front for some of the most consequential labor battles in modern American history, West Virginia spent decades defined by proud populism, a distinct economic identity, and a deeply rural livelihood. But its rightward turn has been stark. Hollowed out political infrastructure has left progressives largely hamstrung in efforts to address the impact of the generational decline of the steel and coal industries on policy, politics, and public opinion in the state.

The only way to build back depleted trust is a coordinated, sustained, and several-cycle deep-canvassing effort, led by trusted, local community members, to persuade voters who have lost faith that a progressive future will benefit them and their loved ones.

A growing organizing ecosystem on the ground is ripe for additional investment as it begins to implement smart and sustainable strategies. From expanding 501c3 and 501c4 civic engagement tables to an energetic populist coalition, we see a rising generation of leadership who will change the trajectory of the state if they can secure the resources to do the work.

Group 3740

IN WEST VIRGINIA, GROUNDWORK PROJECT WILL:

  • x1

    Invest in the local organizers on the ground who are working year-round to engage and educate voters, rebuild progressive infrastructure, and improve the lives of West Virginia families.

  • x1

    Support efforts to execute a year-round, likely decade-long voter engagement strategy to understand, communicate with, and persuade voters who have lost faith.

  • x1

    Partner with organizers, activists, local leaders, and everyday voters in the frontline fights over West Virginia’s future, from voting rights to labor rights to economic justice.

Check back soon for updates on our work in West Virginia

Groups We Love

This list is always growing! Is there a group we should hear about? Let us know at team@groundworkproject.com