Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hands On Advocacy

As one of the 3 hats I wear for a job, being a Coordinator for Parents United is one of them. I'm very lucky, that all 3 of my jobs mesh so well together. I work with Parents and get them to stand up for things they believe in around Early Learning especially, but other issues as well. Advocacy is what I do!!

My best friend and partner in crime, Kylee Allen, is a Coordinator with me of Parents United. We have a lot of fun... And we were really wet!

Parents United is an opportunity for parents across the state to come together to learn more about state policies affecting children and families and to take action. Parents United convenes training's and assists parents in learning how the legislative process works, and what they can do to be a part of it. We held our first HANDS ON ADVOCACY TRAINING on Monday at the Capitol. It was a huge success!

We were joined by about 20 parents and 8 kids from across Washington State. We started the morning with introductions and getting familiar with the Capitol map. We then took a tour of the Legislative Building and learned history and facts about the building and the Democratic Process.  Each parent had help figuring out who their legislators are and found the location of each of their offices. We stopped in to leave notes to their legislators around issues such as Apple Health for Kids, Working Connections, TANF, ECEAP, Charter Schools and any other issues they felt were important to them. 

We joined in with the Revenue Coalitions Rally with SEIU 925, and many other organizations calling for Revenue and Accountability. We think this was the kids' favorite part; dancing to music and having their pictures taken with a giant balloon of the Earth. 

We ended our day by attending a hearing in the Senate for WAKids, (The Washington Kindergarten Inventory of Developing Skills (WaKIDS) helps ensure that children in Washington get a great start in kindergarten.) where one of our parents testified on the importance of continuing the implementation of WAKids. 

We wore bright orange shirts that were donated by the League of Education Voters that said "KIDS FIRST".  We were definitely recognized and stood out where ever we went that day. We've had great feedback from our parents that attended that it was a very informational, fun filled day! We are looking forward to doing it again soon! 

This was an amazing day, and just another reminder why I LOVE MY JOBS! 

For more information about Parents United and how to get involved check out our FaceBook Page @ 

or email .