By Amanda Leigh Brozana, National Grange Lecturer
Thanks to my time in the National Office as a staff member from 2011-14, I had a great sense of the importance of the role of Lecturer nationally and on a local and state level in the Grange, and I was keenly aware of the massive resources the Lecturer’s Department had once been able to provide to Lecturer’s and members across the country.
From this, I drew inspiration from past Lecturer’s and Program books to provide Lecturers with sample programs that can be used in a variety of ways to either spark new activities, outreach and advocacy of local Granges.
Starting this Grange Month, I plan to release one program each month to Lecturers for use in their meetings. These are created as “programs in a box” – with all kinds of resources, tips and tools for the Lecturer to use to provide a program that fits their Grange or stretch beyond their normal approach.
The first of these programs is a prototype that looks at the town created by the New Deal under our fellow Granger, President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
It has been tested by two local Granges that are very different from one another. One is very active, with many programs that engage the public in their little town. The other has been described by the Master as “exemplifying the quiet, peaceful citizens part of our ritual,” often meeting in a member’s home or local restaurant.
Clearly, programming would be vastly different from one meeting style to another, but the outline, suggested activities and ways to engage further on the topic offered allowed each Grange to pick what they were comfortable or equipped to introduce to their membership.
Each program is created in PowerPoint, not because I expect that any Grange will have the technology or inclination to show it as such, but because it allows the key information and notes to be printed in a very easy-to-use and understand fashion. For Lecturers looking at the material at home, preparing to present in their meetings, they can link to the internet if available to get more resources that are provided or they can sometimes see and hear more information in audio or video clips embedded into the program file. There are activities such as a word search for Granges who like to have puzzles and tip sheets or fact sheets for distribution for Granges that like to have folks take something home.
For those Lecturers who shy away from computers, State or Pomona Lecturers – or State Masters – can provide a printed PDF of the PowerPoint that still gives all the necessary information, tips, engagement and advocacy options to the Lecturer without ever touching the computer.
The topics will be varied and by no means are they suggestions on policy or mission of your or any other Grange. Instead, they come from members’ suggestions, questions or areas of expertise. Often these will be created by members or committees who have agreed to assist in this endeavor, truly creating a Lecturer’s Department for full-service support.
Should you use a program created and distributed by the National Lecturer and create additional resources or materials, you can send or email them to me and we will include them on the web page dedicated to Lecturer’s programs.
To download the first program and content materials, and to find other programs as they are released, please visit http://www.nationalgrange.org/lecturers-programming/
Alone, any Lecturer can only create so much, find so many experts and come up with so many ideas, but with more than 2,000 Lecturers around the country, there are innumerable opportunities for great programs to be shared around the Grange nation. For this reason, we are announcing a new contest from the Lecturer’s Department called “Lecturer’s Program in a Box.”