Developing activists through online learning

A stick figure contemplates a cloud of jargon words. Text: 'There are many elements to UNISON's structure. In this module, we'll explore how each of these elements relates to you, in your job role, at your workplace.

One of the most important things a branch can do is to ensure that new and potential UNISON activists get the training they need to carry out their responsibilities confidently and effectively.

But what if a new activist is hesitant to sign up for a course, or worries that they might have difficulty fitting a scheduled course around their personal or professional commitments? If that’s the case, it might help to begin with something less daunting.

Being a UNISON activist is a process of continual learning, so it makes sense to start small! Our Trained and Active Plan helps you do that. If you’re a branch education coordinator, or if you’re acting as a buddy or a mentor for a new activist, you’ll find this a great resource, suggesting small tasks to build confidence alongside skills and knowlege.

Trained and Active Plan

When it comes to learning off the job, our e-learning site provides a great starting point. Here are some ideas.

  • In U in UNISON, the learner explores the union and how it all fits together. You might want to provide some names and contact details to help them build up their picture of UNISON.
  • Many of our members have skills that could be really helpful in building the union – but they may not realise it themselves! Activate! invites members to consider their personal qualities and skills and shows the variety of activist roles that exist within UNISON.
  • For potential activists who are interested in a particular role, we have introductory modules for workplace stewards, UNISON learning reps, branch treasurers, and branch welfare officers. And if someone takes on one of those roles, we recommend completing the relevant introductory module as a starting point.
  • All UNISON activists are required to complete our Data Protection and the GDPR module. This helps us make sure we keep our members’ personal information safe.
  • Reps can also develop a key organising skill with the Map My Workplace game. This activity can be just as valuable for more experienced activists.

Any UNISON member can use the e-learning site. They’ll need a My.UNISON account to log in.

Register for a My.UNISON account

Visit the e-learning site

Those are just a few ideas to get started. And we’ll look forward to seeing those activists further down the line as they grow in confidence and expertise.  But wherever a rep is in their journey, there’s always more to learn.