Platform Presentation for easy reference: 2024 Platform Process Highlights

What are Kitchen Table Conversations? 

Kitchen Table conversations are small group events held by Democrats Abroad members to talk about issues that matter to Americans abroad, and to give members a chance to let Democrats Abroad know what they think about these issues. 

They are also a great way for members to help inform and shape the 2024 Democrats Abroad Platform.

How do KT Conversations work?

  1. Moderators review the Kitchen Table topics list (download the list hereand download topics that most interest them. 
  2. The moderator invites a group of friends to meet in person or on a call to discuss and answer questions on these topics. 
  3. During the conversation, the group records their answers and later submits them to the Kitchen Table Feedback form

This feedback helps shape the way we view these important topics and discuss them in our 2024 platform.  

Getting started

When setting up a conversation, think about who will host, moderate, and take notes. We recommend having at least two people on your host team so that one person can moderate while the other takes notes.  The host team should organize the space and meeting time.

Recruit guests

  • Invite up to a dozen people you think might have something to say and an interest in the topic(s) you’ll discuss. 
  • Send your invite at least a week ahead of time. The invite should include the date, location, and timing plus the topics and discussion description (sample invite below). 
  • Send a reminder message the day of the meeting, to help nudge folk to attend and make sure they have the right address and time.

Prep for the meeting

  • Comfortable location with chairs facing one another
  • Possibly a table for everyone to use to take notes on
  • Printouts of topic(s) for everyone to read and review

The Conversation

Build community

  • As guests arrive, introduce each other. 
  • Include a short social time, either before or after the discussion.

Kick off the conversation 

  • Invite guests to state their names, where they vote and what their expectations are for the discussion. 
  • Remind everyone what a KT conversation is, the steps you’ll take, and how long the discussion will last. 
  • Walk through the discussion guidelines. 
  • Identify who will moderate and who will take notes. Explain how information will be shared with Democrats Abroad.

Work through the topics

For each topic, we’ll ask your team to answer the following questions:

  • Does your team support this stance and DA's actions to address it?
  • How important is this topic for you and your group?
  • If you were working on this topic to submit it as a plank for the Democrats Abroad platform, what additional information would you provide?
  • How would you change the content in this topic to more closely match it to your group's thoughts on this issue?
  • If you, or anyone you know, is directly affected by this topic, please consider adding your story.

After the Meeting

After the meeting, either the moderator or the note taker should upload the group’s answers to the Kitchen Table feedback form. We recommend uploading the notes within a week of your conversation, when details are still fresh.  Please send in your feedback by March 12 at the latest.

Other optional follow ups:

  1. Consider sending a brief email thanks to each of your guests and let them know that their answers have been sent in to the Kitchen Table team. 
  2. Let Democrats Abroad know if you have suggestions or feedback for improving the process, or would like to contribute further to the 2024 Democrats Abroad Platform, or other volunteer actions. 


Role: Moderator
The main role of the moderator is to make sure that guests are all able to contribute and be heard, and that discussion is productive. 

  • Pay attention to everyone in your group. 
  • Check to make sure each person understands the question being addressed. 
  • Make sure people take turns when speaking.
  • Consider using a timer for comments (set that rule at the beginning of the meeting).  Three minutes per point is generally long enough for anyone to make a point. 
  • Energize the group when needed (through humor, a stretch break, etc).
  • Ask and suggest that the group move on to another topic or question when necessary. 
  • Paraphrase and summarize to help bring a topic to a close or move on to another topic. 
  • Work with your note taker to make sure they feel included, and are keeping up. 
  • Consider using visual aids for note taking and questions (write questions on a big pad or flip chart, add brainstormed comments, etc).

Role: Note Taker
The main role of the note taker is to accurately record the group’s answers to each topic question, and submit the answers to the Kitchen Table feedback form no later than 10 days after the Talk. 

  • When recording answers, consider jotting quotes as well
  • After each question, check with guests to make sure the answer is clear and agreed on 
  • Encourage guests to write down their quotes (legibly) for later transcription
  • Share final answers with the moderator and interested guests before submitting to the KT feedback form
  • Come prepared : paper and pen, smart phone for snapping pics of guest notes, large pads of paper are useful 

Sample Invitation to Guests

Hi {Friend name},
Next year’s elections in the States aren’t just about electing a Democratic President, winning back the House and keeping the Senate. It’s also a time when the Democratic Party discusses its policies and refines its platform. Democrats Abroad is getting a head start on their platform process by asking members to send in our opinions on platform topics. I wondered if you’d like to meet up for what they’re calling Kitchen Table Conversations to discuss a few of these topics.

Right now the topics I’ve pulled from the list are (insert topics). For a full list check out the ones listed here: Kitchen Table Conversations.

If this sounds interesting, how does (date and time) at (address) work for you to meet up?

Sample Agenda

  1. Meet up, and welcome guests
  2. Introductions - of each other and KT conversations 
  3. Review process and conversation guidelines 
  4. Discuss topics and answer questions 
  5. What’s missing? What still needs to be said? 
  6. Thank you and close the meeting