We need your voice
Join the NF Network advocates. As the national leaders in the promotion of government-funded NF research we need Your voice to bring the NF message to Congress each year to secure federal funds for NF research.
As an advocate, you will
- Generate action from our elected officials by making calls and writing letters
- Stay on top of policy and legislative issues through alerts and updates
- Help elevate the need for NF Research funding
Structure of your meeting:
Preparing for your Congressional Meetings
- Prepare a short document sharing your personal story
- Collect letters and stories from other impacted by NF –Let Members of Congress know they have constituents impacted by NF in their state/district.
- Make it local -you are the constituent.
- Make it Personal –tell your story.
- Remember to ask for support, don’t assume they will help.
- You’re likely to meet Staff and not the Members.
- Be flexible about where you’re meeting is held -you may be asked to meet in the hall or in the cafeteria.
- Meetings could last just 15 minutes. Plan to make your point quickly if necessary.
- Introduce yourself and share where you are from.
- Give a brief background on NF –what is it and where does research funding come from Department of Defense (DOD) and National Institutes of Health (NIH). See NF Fact Sheet.
- Share your story.
- Ask for their support (sign letter, put NF on their wish list).
- Leave behind a packet of information explaining NF, our request and your contact information.
- Thank them for their time and invite them to contact you with any questions.
Advocacy Do's and Don'ts:
When meeting with your Congressional Representative, follow these do’s and dont’s to help ensure a productive and successful meeting for your lobbying efforts.
- DO arrive on time.
- DO begin by thanking the Legislator and/or staff for meeting with you.
- DO state that you are a constituent.
- DO keep your message short, relevant and to the point.
- DO designate a spokesperson.
- DO make your ASK! Don’t just go over your points, ASK for your Member to take action on your behalf.
- DO justify your request, but DON’T overwhelm staff with too much information.
- DO leave suggested letters and fact sheets on the issue.
- DO thank them.
- DO follow up!
- DON’T be afraid - You are a constituent and have a good story to tell!
- DON’T be argumentative. It’s okay to disagree. Be polite, but persistent as you make your points.
- DON’T claim to be an expert. If you do not know an answer to a question, offer to find out and contact them soon after your meeting.
- DON’T assume that Members of Congress or their staff members understand the issue and avoid acronyms if possible.