One of Promise the Children’s main goals is to encourage our visitors, supporters and volunteers to stay in contact with their elected officials. Please engage them in ongoing conversations about issues and policies relating to legislation that benefits young children. It is critical that we, the voters, tell our elected officials and candidates for public office that we want all children to have a strong start in life. This means that from birth all children must have good nutrition, health care, child care and appropriate early education. Promise the Children keeps you informed about legislation and offers timely information on how to take action so as to advocate for the strong start in a young life.
How can you advocate for preschoolers? Every Child Matters provides helpful tips on how to communicate effectively with your elected officials. Here is a short summary for our visitors.
First, find the names and contact information, including phone numbers, home and email addresses, web sites and Facebook and Twitter accounts of your elected officials in Washington.
You can text 520-200-2223 with your full zip code in the message box. You will receive a return text showing the phone numbers for your President and your congressmen or women.
You can send a post card to your President, Congressional representatives and senators by emailing Tiny Hands who will transcribe and deliver the card for you.
You can email the members of Congress who represent you, in most cases directly from their websites, or from the House or Senate websites. Make sure to state a policy or problem. Then explain your solutions, and propose a call to action (such as a vote in favor). The same applies to a written letter. For both, make sure to request a reply and include your contact information. Promise the Children will give you links to sample letters for specific action alerts.
Promise the Children will let you know if there is an appropriate petition posted to sign on the internet.
Social media is another great way to stay in contact with elected officials. Most legislators, but not all, use Facebook and Twitter to connect with their constituents. Often, you can find links to their social media pages on their websites. Keep your questions short, but specific. Here is an example of a Tweet to post with our Twitter account at the end. “What is your proposal to make quality early education and child care affordable for every working parent? @promisethechild
Telephoning your members of Congress is a more personal way to get your message across. It can be intimidating, but if you have a clear purpose, write down what you want to say, practice it, and include a related personal story. Then you are likely to succeed. You can find the phone number as we have suggested, or call the White House switchboard at 202-225–3121.
Finally, you can attend a public event where you will have the opportunity to speak with a member of Congress. Bring a list of questions. You might go with a group of people who have similar questions. That way if you don’t get a chance to speak, a member of your group might.
If you don’t get a direct answer using any of these methods, don’t be discouraged! The more people ask about an issue or policy, the more likely a politician is to address it. Keep at it, and encourage others to do the same. And exercise your right to vote!
Most important of all, sign up for our action alerts at the bottom of this page, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter. Promise the Children will keep you posted about opportunities on ways to advocate on specific issues related to the right start for young children.