Take Your Member of Congress to Work
Invite your Members of Congress to be a “Caseworker for a Day.” Bringing your Member of Congress to a SNAP/Food Stamp office or a site where SNAP applications are available is an effective tool to educate them about the program, the impact it has on the community, and to get face time with SNAP applicants and recipients.
Take the SNAP/Food Stamp Challenge.
The SNAP Challenge gives participants a view of the struggle to obtain adequate food that is faced by millions of low-income Americans. Most participants take the Challenge for one week, living on about $4 per day worth of food – the average food stamp benefit. Challenge participants are forced to make food shopping choices on a limited budget, and learn how difficult it is to avoid hunger, afford nutritious foods, and stay healthy without adequate resources.
While living on a food stamp budget for just a week cannot come close to the struggles encountered by low-income families week after week and month after month, it does provide those who take the Challenge with a new perspective and greater understanding.
By hosting a Challenge, you can help raise awareness of hunger in your community and the need to keep SNAP strong. FRAC has developed a toolkit and sample materials for you to use in creating your Challenge. You can customize these materials with your logo and community data. If you need further assistance, contact Betsy Edwards (email@example.com).
Capitol Hill Contact Resources
Create a paper plate campaign:
A paper plate campaign is an easy – and effective – way to convey a message to your Member of Congress. Download FRAC 101: Paper Plate Campaign
(pdf) for instructions.
How to organize a site visit:
Inviting Members of Congress to visit Child Nutrition program sites in their state or district is a powerful way to engage them. By witnessing the programs first hand, Members can see the vital importance of these investments in children. To help you prepare for a site visit, FRAC has prepared the following materials:
- Child Nutrition Programs in Action – Potential Site Visits (pdf) outlines types of sites, such as summer feeding or afterschool programs, WIC clinics, child development centers and family child care homes. Advocates can use this information to help determine when and where to invite Members, as well as identify the goals of each visit.
- Site Visits to Child Nutrition Programs (pdf) is FRAC’s guide to conducting a successful site visit. It outlines how to identify a site, prepare for the visit, craft a message, work with the media, and follow up with your Member after the visit.
- This model invitation letter can be customized for your needs when inviting Members to visit your program.
- This model scheduling request can be adapted to provide your Member with the exact logistical information for your site visit.
How to organize a community conference call: