THIS is it. This is the launch of the fundraiser for the national campaign organisation the Scottish Independence Convention which has been developing for a while. Would we like to have got here before now? Yes, of course. But it was important we did this right and not just fast.

There have been many brilliant initiatives coming out of the independence movement. Many of them are the bright ideas and brilliant work of a small number of great, driven and innovative people.

We welcome them all. Indeed, many of them are members of the Scottish Independence Convention.

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But from since we reformed the SIC two years ago, we have believed only a totally inclusive approach which allowed everyone to get round the table would create the unity and togetherness which could fairly represent our big, wide, diverse movement. We have worked through consensus – but consensus takes time. People might well ask: “How can it take six months to agree a constitution?”. But anyone who has ever tried to get dozens of organisations to work through every bit of it to make sure they are happy will tell you this is how long it takes.

Then we tried to design the rough shape of an organisation which can run a campaign on behalf of us all. We listened to everything everyone told us, and we worked hard both to meet their hopes and make changes where there were concerns.

For example, many people were worried we might repeat some of the mistakes made by Yes Scotland – that we’d pay salaries that were too high, or waste money on furniture or that we’d be aloof and distant from the grassroots of the movement.

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When someone has spoken, we’ve not only listened but changed our plans. And again, this took time, a willingness to compromise and an awful lot of work.

The hours and hours that many people have put into getting here is a credit to the tenacity and spirit of the independence movement. I am very grateful to everyone for all their efforts and patience. And we’re here now. We are a coalition of all of Scotland’s national pro-independence political parties and campaign organisations. We have always wanted to get the local grassroots organisations fully involved as well and now that the grassroots are setting up their own regional forums we’re inviting them to join too – Highlands and Aberdeenshire have joined already.

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We believe in unity. We believe the differences we have on this issue or that issue are tiny in comparison to the big, hopeful idea that Scotland can be its own country. We all believe this with all our hearts and we all want to make that happen.

We have no desire to get in the way of all the brilliant things that are already happening, but there are more things we need to do if we’re going to win. That’s what this is all about. We have an organisation plan. We have started the research that will inform a strategy. We’ve taken legal and professional advice on how to make sure this new organisation is rock-solid and that opponents can’t pick holes in it. We’ve worked really hard to get a governance model which will allow the organisation to be fast and responsive but also accountable and working for us all.

A few weeks ago, we put out a tender to get a professional company to develop an identity and name and style and feel for the organisation.

We have some really exciting plans – and we’re itching to get cracking. But we can’t do any of this without your support. Unless the thousands and thousands of people in Scotland who believe in independence chip in whatever they can afford to donate, we can’t do any of this. It is simply not possible to run an effective national campaign without people and resources.

If you back us, it is for us to live up to your hopes. We must do the work, develop a campaign, have a real impact. We have worked tirelessly to get here and will keep doing that until Scotland is independent.

This is it. This is the coalition of the whole independence movement. This is the result of two years of work. This is the plan we have painstakingly produced. This is how we believe we can reach the hundreds of thousands of former No voters who are potential Yes voters.

This is our best effort. We hope we can win your trust, your enthusiasm – and your support.