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The Truth behind the Youth Voter Drive #RockEnrol

The Truth behind the Youth Voter Drive #RockEnrol

by Laura O’Connell-Rapira

There has been a lot of talk about using gigs and music as an incentive to get more young people voting in this years’ General Election. It all started when Tom Scott of Home Brew took to Facebook with a call to action for promoters and musicians to organise a gig on the same day, at the same time around the country where the only requirement for entry was you had to enrol to vote.

Within 24 hours, Scott had 17 promoters put their hands up to get their hands dirty. An email thread ensued, a Loomio group was set up, meetings were had, networking was done and just as the ‘Rock the Vote’ inspired initiative began to take shape: this happened.
“Although we would have liked to release our strategy and plans for people powered parties and politics closer to the time our website was due to launch, we may as well leverage the publicity and make it public now. The campaign is called #RockEnrol and we will launch as a crowdfunding campaign on June 1st and then a web platform on June 15th.” says Laura O’Connell-Rapira, the RockEnrol Campaign Director.

RockEnrol is set to be a crowdfuelled and collaborative experiential marketing campaign designed to build and activate political power for young people in Aotearoa NZ. The campaign is non-partisan, youth-led and is comprised of three major phases: get the youth enrolled, get the youth informed, get the youth voting (details here). RockEnrol will host its first Open Evening in Auckland on Saturday 24th May on Karangahape Road.
So where does the music come in? ‘40 Days of #RockEnrol’ is a series of events and parties that will take place around the country from July 1st – August 9th. The only prerequisite to attend a RockEnrol event is the participant has to pledge to vote for any political party in the 2014 General Election on the RockEnrol website.

“Pending confirmations, but so far it looks like we’ll be lucky enough to see free performances from Homebrew, Optimus Gryme, Third3ye, Chronophonium, Tiki Taane and more this Winter as long as you’re enrolled and pledge.”

“As far as I am aware, the Internet Party will be working with a group of NZ musicians and doing a tour in July to try and rally support. This is a separate initiative from ours, and that’s totally fine. We are not the first, nor are we the only campaign to come up with idea to work with people from the creative industries or leverage popular culture to engage more people in what can often be bureaucratic and boring. Rock The Vote has been around for more than 30 years.”

RockEnrol is a non-partisan effort dedicated to building the political power of young people in this country by identifying issues that are important to young voters, engaging youth in the electoral process by making it easy and relevant, urging politicians to pay attention to issues that matter to young voters and ultimately, getting out the youth vote. RockEnrol is driven largely by Our Place Events and Generation Zero, among others.

(NOTE: This was first published on Public Address in the comment section on this post : http://publicaddress.net/hardnews/weirder-yet/ )


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