IT'S TIME FOR SUMMER RECESS RUSH
INVITE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS TO VISIT YOUR PROGRAM TODAY!
Congress will soon break for its annual August recess and will be back in their home states and districts for five weeks straight. This is the perfect opportunity for you to invite them to visit your program to call for increased funding, reauthorization of the Older Americans Act (OAA) and protection of this valuable piece of legislation from sequestration. We've created a variety of tools to make it easy for you to get started today.
Our Summer Recess Rush Toolkit will assist you in educating Congress on the work you, your staff and your volunteers do each day, how it is making a significant difference in the lives of the seniors you serve, and that the OAA is a critical part of the solution to ensuring that no senior is left isolated or hungry. Even if your organization doesn't receive federal funding through the OAA, thousands of seniors in your state are benefiting from this outstanding public-private partnership.
TOOLS TO HELP YOU ENGAGE YOUR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS
It is important that we keep the momentum going from the Senate’s recent passing of S.192, the OAA Reauthorization Act of 2015 as it moves to the U.S. House of Representatives for consideration. We've outlined a few simple steps that you can take during our Summer Recess Rush:
- Get Them Involved: Invite your Members of Congress to go on a "ride along" with a volunteer, visit a congregate site and/or help prepare nutritious meals using this customizable letter.
- Know the Facts: Review our Key Messages and Quick Facts to brush up on your knowledge of the OAA and senior hunger.
- Know Your Members: The Key Congressional Committee Guide will help you determine if your Members of Congress serve on Committees that oversee legislation affecting your program. If they do, reaching out to them can be especially impactful.
- Publicize and Thank: Inform local media of an upcoming visit and extend a "thank you" to your Members of Congress by customizing this press release template.
- Get Social: Spread the word on social media using the "Dear Congress" images. Be sure to use the hashtag #WeAreOAA and/or #MoreThanaMeal.
- Ask Your Rep. to Speak Out: Urge your Representative to deliver a One-Minute Speech on the House floor about his or her experience visiting your program and the value of the OAA. Here's a ready-to-go template that you can send directly to your Representative’s office.
- Sign On: Sign onto this coalition letter no later than August 21 to join organizations nationwide that are advocating to end sequestration.
RESOURCES TO MAKE YOUR VISIT A SUCCESS
These tools explain the purpose of the OAA, the legislative issues and the actions Members of Congress can take to support the seniors you serve. Have these on hand when elected officials visit your program and/or share them directly with their staffs today:
- Reauthorize, Fund and Protect Handout: This is a great leave-behind for meetings that summarizes the three important legislative actions Members of Congress can take.
- OAA Flyer: This 8.5 x 11 flyer provides a more detailed description of the OAA and how it supports nutritious meals. It can be easily printed in-house, shared on social media and/or emailed directly to congressional offices.
- More Than a Meal Research: The executive summary and infographic of our groundbreaking research study provide impactful overviews that can be printed in-house and/or sent electronically to help make your case.
- State-By-State and National Fact Sheets: These tools provide state-level data on hunger, isolation, poverty and OAA Nutrition Programs, summarizing the key problem, solution and facts.
SHARE WHAT YOU'RE UP TO
As you take action locally, please keep us informed at the national level. When our efforts are united and we're communicating with elected officials from multiple touch points, we'll have an even greater impact. Always feel free to reach out directly to our Advocacy Team with stories, photos, data, questions and ideas.
Erika Kelly, Chief Advocacy and Government Affairs Officer
firstname.lastname@example.org or 571-339-1604
Crystal Espie, Public Policy Manager
email@example.com or 571-339-1613
And, for frequent advocacy updates and legislative news, be sure to follow Erika on Twitter @NoSeniorHungry.