Five Ways to Advocate in the New Year
January 1, 2024
Do you have New Years Resolutions to be more active in your community, improve your program, or make your voice heard? Here are five ideas to help meet your goals:
- Take action on important legislation
- Host your elected officials
- Share your story
- Promote the CACFP
- Advocate for CACFP Week
1. Take Action on Important Legislation
The CACFP is making strides in Congress with three historic bills! This is your opportunity to let Congress know why increased reimbursement, the elimination of tiering and adding reimbursement for an additional meal are vital for the CACFP. Plus, it takes less than six minutes! Visit NCA’s Action Center and send three letters to your elected officials.
2. Host Your Elected Official
Showcasing your program is one of the most impactful ways to advocate for the CACFP. Most elected officials have never heard of the CACFP before, and therefore don’t support bills or initiatives that would improve the CACFP. Giving your elected official the opportunity to experience the CACFP firsthand will not only make them familiar with the program, but also allow them to interact with those who benefit the most from the CACFP – the kiddos and/or adults in your care! Invite your elected officials to visit your site to interact with and serve meal/snack to the children or adults in your care. For more information, watch NCA’s webinar Advocating for the CACFP: How to Host Elected Officials or read our quick tipsheet.
3. Share Your Story
Sharing your stories and experiences can be incredibly impactful. Providers love to hear what innovative and successful things others are doing in their program. It’s also good to know if others are facing the same struggles as you. Sharing your success stories or your challenges can be helpful for others in the CACFP community. Submit your story to tell us more about your program and potentially be featured on our member showcase blog!
4. Promote the CACFP
One in every five children in the United States is food insecure, meaning that approximately 13 million children do not know where their next meal will come from. The CACFP has proven to lowers the odds of food insecurity, poor health, or admittance to hospitals for young children. However, research has shown that the CACFP is underutilized! A great way to ensure that children in your community and across the nation receive nutritious meals is to promote the CACFP to other providers who are not currently participating in the CACFP. Tell them how the CACFP could benefit them, how it could benefit the children and parents they serve, and post about your participation on social media.
5. Send a CACFP Week Proclamation to Your Governor
CACFP Week is a national education and information campaign sponsored annually on the third week of March by the National CACFP Sponsors Association. The campaign is designed to raise awareness of how the USDA's Child and Adult Care Food Program works to combat hunger and improve nutrition security. This year, National CACFP Week will take place from March 10-16 and will acknowledge the child and adult care providers, nutrition educators, program specialists and staff, state and federal professionals and parents who contribute to the success of the CACFP. States, US Territories and local authorities can bring recognition to the importance of the CACFP and its stakeholders by proclaiming the 3rd week of March as CACFP Week. You can take action by sending a proclamation request to your governor and/or local official.