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My name is Sharan Virk and I am an activist in Gravesend and have been campaigning both locally and nationally since 2015 (I'm only 23 but mate that makes me feel old). I've also been lucky to stand a few times in local elections over the past 4 years. One thing we can all agree upon is that politics is more often than not, considered a passion of those much older than us - no wonder we're always met with delight when we turn up to organised events!
The first local Lib Dem meeting I attended was a culture shock but something I don't know why I didn't see coming; the room was full of white older men with very few women - Merilyn and Mary amongst them, who some of you probably know! The entire group are some of the loveliest people I know but still I am constantly aware of the fact that we need more younger people and more importantly, diversity.
Therefore, we (that's me, and Rhoanne, who is a young activist in Sevenoaks) want to develop a group for younger Liberal Democrat activists in our part of Kent in order to create a space in which we can lead the conversation regarding the current state of not only our country, but the constantly evolving world around us. The aim is to bring together fresh ideas and thoughts in a place where you don't have to feel overwhelmed or daunted by your lack of political experience - I've been doing this for a while now and I still feel like I don't know anything! We want to create a no judgement zone where we can use our collective knowledge to understand and tackle the biggest issues facing us as a generation and species. WE will lead the discussions and choose what we want to advocate for; racism, sexism, LGBTQIA+ rights, environment, privacy laws, Trump (yep that needs a whole topic to itself), the growing far right - the list is endless and it is adaptable to what WE want to learn about! The aim is to have guest speakers, events, roundtable discussions, campaigns and the such all in order to educate ourselves and tell the local community that there are still young people who are actively standing up for liberal, inclusive, tolerant values and are challenging the dogma of hate and exclusivity.
Furthermore, there will be workshops (maybe virtual for now) where you can develop your understanding of political diplomacy by learning from the more experienced members of our local Lib Dem community. And we will also lead such events to help other members find out about the problems AND solutions our generation faces to ensure that we can bridge the gap between our generations so that we can understand each other better. And of course we want to be involved in deliveries, canvassing and all the fun of local election campaigns!
There is much more to be finalised and put into action and I cannot tell you how excited I am about this endeavour and what we'll be able to accomplish together. If this is something that speaks to you and you would like to be involved, just reply to this email so that we can keep you updated! In the meantime, feel free to think over ideas and topics that you may want to bring to the table and how we can make a joint difference.
Best warmest wishes,
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