EXCLUSIVE: Policy and Social Action are CFs' Future.

By Stephen Canning

This week I attended two very enjoyable CF events, the first of these was a social action project held at CCHQ where we were packing care packages for British soldiers and the second a London CF Policy Forum where the topic for discussion was schools and the education system.

The social action event was a great way to try and do my bit and the debate offered up some fantastic and frank discussion about the topic and some excellent fresh perspectives at the policy form. But what I took most from the two events was that this was what the future of Conservative Future, in my eyes, should be.

For a long, long time general thinking around CF has been how best to maximise the ‘ground troops’ for election day as it were and how to use the fantastic campaigning resource at our disposal to best effect for the party. With the rising popularity of the policy forums, and similarly social action projects, across the country I see it as the first step in a big change in the relationship between CF and the main party.

Of course we should make no bones about it - at our core we are there to leaflet, to campaign and to door-knock. That’s what we excel at, that’s where we are needed and that’s what will help the party win elections. However that does not mean that we have to exclusively be leaflet fodder.

The CF policy forums, under the brilliant direction of Sam Emery and Rory White-Andrews as Joint Directors, have quickly become a way for us to build a more two way relationship with the party which I feel can only get stronger.

This coupled with the serious way that CF branches across the country have taken social action represents a transformative move in our organisation. We are now grappling with a range of new resources from which we can make real impact, deliver real change and of course have fun, meet new people and enjoy being part of a group of like minded souls who challenge and develop each others ideas.

Ultimately I believe that all the candidates currently fighting for the position of National Chair, those challenging for regional positions and those just setting up their local branches should challenge themselves to deliver CF into a stronger and even greater future.

One that builds on our existing successes such as our fantastic record over the Boris campaign, the superb work of the Northern Partnership. As well as the countless social action projects and our ever growing blogosphere, but that also takes into account new opportunities that could help propel CF forward.