5 Steps to start engaging citizens to tackle social issues

4 min readFeb 19, 2016

Think about a social problem that is really important to you. Something that bothers you when is not working right. It could be, something small. For instance, it drives me crazy when my friends waste plastic bottles when we live in the top bottle water consuming country in the world!

I´m sure we can all think of something. But most of the time we just don´t do anything. For X amount of reasons. Although, I challenge YOU to give yourself permission to try something this time. Don´t worry I will show you what you can do.

MakeSense, is a global community that provides the tools and resources so citizens can take action in solving the social and environmental issues that they care about. If you want to start mobilizing people around a cause important to you, I have some tips to share:

1.MAKE AN OPEN INVITATION. You can´t do this alone, so you can start sharing your personal motivations to act on this issue.

For instance, in this great article, Vicky, a MakeSense volunteer shares her personal journey on the food security issue and concrete steps other could take.

Get the message out there!

2.KICKSTART A WORKING GROUP. After you have shared with others your motivations you probably have already found a couple of people who also connect with the same issue and would like to do something about it.

For instance, in México after making an invitation to start working on education issues on the local Facebook group of MakeSense, we had a group of 15 people showing up ready to start working on it.

3.RESEARCH AND LEARN: With your team you can start learning more about the topic. Who are the key stakeholders, what are some of the innovations being implemented to try to solve it. This will allow you to focus exactly on key sub topics you would like to work on. There are different methodologies you could use for this stage.

In México the question subtopic is the empowerment of young students to become autodidacts so they can continue their education despite the challenges on their environment.

This is the working group in México who are are now focusing on access to education.

4.SET A CALENDAR: By organising different events you can connect with other great people who have something valuable to add to your cause. For instance, to kickstart the mobilization on FoodSecurity a MKSRoom will be organised.

This is an event that mixes music art and social entrepreneurship. Bringing artists and entrepreneurs to give visibility to the issue and create meaningful conversations among the participants.

5.INVITE OTHERS TO FOLLOW: One of the benefits of working within a global community of passionate people is that ideas can be replicated quickly. You can share about what you have done and you can encourage people in other cities to also launch a mobilization about the same issue.

For instance, Alejandra Cano from Guanajuato is currently working with a group of volunteers also seeking solutions on education.

Do you want to get engaged? Tell us what is an issue that you are interested on and we will help you to start doing something to change it! You can contact me at lorena@makesense.org

P.S. To discover stories from the community read here!

Lorena is helping the MakeSense community to grow in Latin America.
She is working with the different Hotspots to get citizens involved in solving social startups’ challenges.




makesense est une communauté internationale de citoyens, d’entrepreneurs et d’organisations qui résolvent ensemble les défis sociaux et environnementaux