Organizing a Letter Writing Session
A few well-thought out letters on a topic related to peace in the Holy Land can have a profound impact on a legislator. Most receive only a few letters on most issues, so they assume that a single letter represents the views of many people. Here are some ideas to help you organize letter writing sessions at your meeting, church or group or to encourage people to write at home. CMEP thanks to FCNL for this text.
Is there an occasion?
Can you tie letter writing to adult religious education programs, community events, or special days such as Hiroshima Day, Martin Luther King Day, or Mother's Day? Also, choose topics that are timely so that they will have a maximum impact on legislators. Stick to just one issue at a time and keep information to one or two pages to avoid overwhelming people. If you organize consistent letter writing sessions for your meeting, church or community group, try varying the topics to widen the circle of people who participate.
Set up a letter writing table
Setting up a table after worship service or a meeting can spur people to sit down and write. The table should be clearly marked and equipped with paper, pens, stamps, envelopes, postcards, and information sheets (current talking points or articles you pull together). Have on hand the addresses of the people in Congress or the administration you are writing. Think about all the districts in which people may live. Seed the table with a few people. Nothing draws like a crowd.
Talk about yourselves
Your elected representatives want to know who you are, where you live, where yoru children go to school, what groups you participate in. Encourage letter writers to devote at least 1/3 of each letter to information about themselves.
Promoting letter writing
When people get back positive letters or positively influence a congressperson’s vote, report that information. It can really boost enthusiasm. A letter writing table or event is an easy and social way to get people involved, but you may also want to encourage people to write letters individually. Consider including weekly or monthly letter writing information in your meeting or church newsletter or announcements.