Focus: Communications - Supporters urged 'keep campaigning'

The Make Poverty History coalition is maintaining the momentum of the 2005 campaign by providing links on its website that redirect supporters to organisations with related campaigns.

Now the campaign is coming to an end, the coalition wants to ensure the enthusiasm of the 500,000 people who subscribed to the MPH website is not wasted.

"We had 250,000 people turn out at Edinburgh to support the campaign, more than half of whom had never actively supported a campaign before," says Kirsty McNeil, a member of the co-ordinating team at MPH.

"We want people to stick with it until the job is done, so we wanted a site that was a one-stop shop for those who have developed an interest in campaigning," adds McNeil, who also works for the Stop Aids Coalition, which has links to the new site. The new website also has links to the Trade Justice Movement, the Jubilee Debt Campaign and the UK Aid Network, all of which campaign on issues that were central to MPH.

Although the terms of agreement for subscribers to the MPH website states that people's contact details will be kept only until the end of January, they can resubscribe to a new list that will run for another six months.

"We didn't want to lose that connection with people just because the movement has come to an end," explains Glen Tarman, co-ordinator of the Trade Justice Movement and head of new media for MPH. "So we hope some will go on to join organisations that are continuing to campaign. For those who are not ready to join an organisation, there are links to email campaigns they can get involved in."

The new site is also intended to preserve the legacy of MPH and will feature footage, audio recordings and testimonies of people involved in the coalition. It is promoting a campaign to encourage people to email the Chancellor, Gordon Brown, in support of a levy on air travel to boost aid.

"The website will act as an archive to an exciting year," says Tarman.

"There will be a section containing a verdict on the year and clarifying what happened, as well as what remains to be done."

The site address is www.makepovertyhistory.org/keep campaigning.

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