We want to empower FCDC members with the training and tools needed for success.

Organize Precincts

I’ve often told Providence Democrats that FCDC should primarily be a precinct captain support group. The precinct captains are the ones on the front lines, with a large number of people supporting the basic operation of getting people out to vote—for the right side.

That’s why we’ve worked so relentlessly on making sure we have a precinct captain in every precinct. Because a precinct captain’s job is not simply to staff the polling places on election day. The precinct captain should get to know the precinct, recruit volunteers, and get them energized. The volunteers can then go out and talk to voters neighbor to neighbor.

The goal has long been to have block captains within precincts, and through continuous work we have begun to see results. In some precincts, the precinct captain has assigned volunteers to their own neighborhoods. People who know their neighbors, or will get to know their neighbors, people who know who needs to have their door knocked again, and know when that door does not need to be knocked on yet again.

When executed correctly, this approach is far more effective than the approach of statewide (or national) campaigns, which recruit volunteers and then send them out as flying canvassers, going from precinct to precinct without ever getting to know who they’re talking to. Those volunteers are not empowered, they are simply used, and forgotten about once the campaign is over.

This takes work, but it can be done. We’ve done it.


In Providence, we typically have training sessions once or twice a year for precinct captains. A trained precinct captain is a more effective precinct captain.

We also have highly effective Vice Chairs for Precinct Operations, who each have a part of Providence, and who make sure that their precinct captains have the resources they need.

I’d like to implement broader training. We have done training for canvassers, etc., but this program should be expanded and made more widely available. There are some good trainers in FCDC ready to jump in and help.