A is for ADVOCACY

A great beginning to this A to Z Child Abuse Prevention project is ADVOCACY.

Advocacy – the act or process of supporting a cause or proposal: the act or process of advocating something

There are many causes out there and none can prove to be more important than those designed to protect our children. I say “our children” because all the children belong to all of us. There is no avenue to escape responsibility for those who come after us. Even if you don’t have children of your own, the children that are here and the ones to come will be your neighbors, your doctors, your bus drivers, the spouses of your future children. What happens to OUR children can and will affect you.

To keep the message simple I’ll simply state: If there is something you care about, believe that you can make a difference, and be an advocate. Just Do It.

You’ll think of a hundred reasons why you can’t or shouldn’t. A dozen scenarios that would be a better time or circumstance than now to take action will come to mind. Some convince themselves that a person as insignificant as them could not make a difference in a cause so big. I know these are lies. Lies I’ve told. Lies I’ve leaned on.

There is just no excuse for not doing the right thing. For standing by and doing nothing. Not when there is a need you know in your heart is true and not when all the negatives lie within NOT doing something.

To be clear, I’m not suggesting anyone quit their job and volunteer full time at their favorite shelter or sell all their worldly possessions and donate the money to charity. The world doesn’t work that way because it is an all-around bad economic model.

What I am asking you to do is simply… DO SOMETHING. Even if it is just one small thing you can do, if you and thousands of other people do it then it becomes a big thing. It could be the hugest thing and you were part of it.

Again, ADVOCACY is a perfect start to this project because it is FREE. It’s just you and your voice, your words, your actions. You educating, motivating, fighting, changing minds and changing policy. It’s so easy I am doing it right now from the convenience of my couch and it cost me thirty minutes of my life.

So what can you do to be an advocate?

  • Research local child abuse prevention organizations and simply sign up to be on their mailing list. They don’t spam and their newsletters will let you know what you can  do, what they need and FUN events in your area for fundraising.
  • Put the link to an organization you are passionate about in your email signature. I’m not talking about an ad or a call to action but a simple line like this is free advertising which is commodity for strapped charities.

The Child Abuse Prevention Center changes lives and you could too.

  • Blog, Pin, Tweet, put a bumper sticker on your car, wear a charity t-shirt, get your next credit card branded with your charity (they get a donation) put a flyer in your shop window… put the word out there without saying a word. We are curious creatures and the more people thinking about and looking into the organizations you care about the better.
  • If you know someone, who knows someone, who knows someone who has connections or can affect change in your area talk to them and let them see how much Child Abuse Prevention means to you. Caring can be contagious and your genuine pleas could reach the right ears.
  • Write editorials in your local print and online newspapers and newsletters letting people know about your charity of choice and what they can do.
  • If you know of a need and know someone who can provide that need, make the connection and get the best deal possible for a good cause. Your connections could move something from unattainable to realistic or, even better, FREE.

ADVOCACY… You CAN Do It!

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