OLPC4USALobbying

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The content of this section is considered
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This organization was replaced with or renamed to Earth Treasury in late 2006/early 2007.

One of the main thrusts of OLPC4USA is lobbying the various officials in the US government to raise awareness about just what the OLPC initiative is and inquire as to why so little is being done by our government to get on board with the program. Lobbying is one of the most effective ways that people who have very little time to help with the effort can lend a hand.

This page serves as a "How-To" guide to lobbying your particular slate of US government officials:

Step 1: Pick your officials. The USA.gov contact page has all e-mail and mailing addresses for all officials in the US government at the state and local levels. Simply pick your particular favorite elected official and go.

Step 2: Compose a letter. E-mail or snail mail? You choose. E-mail is free both financially and from a tree-based perspective, and therefore (to many minds) vastly superior over the analog version. But either way, we're okay with it. You are welcome to compose your own missive, however we also have a page of sample letters from which you may borrow and steal to your heart's desire.

Some things to keep in mind when composing a letter:

  • Keep it cordial: You are writing to ask for information and possibly a position on an issue (OLPC). You may also want to encourage your chosen government official to follow a course of action (buy into the OLPC initiative). That said, do it nicely. It may be hard to see it sometimes, but our government officials really are REALLY busy people. They are much more likely to respond to you if you are polite and respectful than if you are a nasty, beastly thing.
  • Keep it neat and tidy: Spell check, grammar edit and all that stuff that shows that you care about your words will come accross as such.
  • Keep it short: You want to ask about information about the OLPC initiative and what your official feels about the subject in terms of its feasability for the school children of the United States. That's it. Don't ask for information on unrelated issues; taxes, war, etc. This is really for two reasons. First, as stated above, officials are busy, busy people. Second, by asking about multiple issues officials or their staff members who read these type of letters may address other concerns and not the OLPC related part. So save the other issues for other letters.
  • Don't get discouraged: You might not ever get a response. That's okay. Just by sending the note you have brought the issue to the attention of someone who is closer to the legislative apparatus of your state/federal government than you are. Someone really is in charge of reading your letter and they will. That's a great thing. And while you might never be officially congratulated for doing it, we hereby use this space to congratulate you.
Step 3: Repeat, as often as you like. You can send multiple letters to multiple government officials multiple times. In fact, the more you repeat yourself the more likely you are to get an official response.
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