Debi Lombardi at panel

Over the past couple weeks, I’ve had the honor to present to national partners hosting conferences in DC to lobby on issues important to them. After presenting to Feeding America, sitting on a panel for YMCA, and speaking with folks from the American Alliance of Museums, I’ve learned one important thing: Nonprofits are ready for the 2020 elections.

Here’s a wrap up of some of the big takeaways from  each of the conferences I attended:

Build voter engagement into your existing infrastructure. Our friends at the American Alliance of Museums reminded us that sometimes the best way to offer voter engagement is by taking advantage of the ways you already engage with folks one-on-one. As potential voters enter museums, they can be asked, “Are you up-to-date on your voter registration?” 

Tie voter education to your mission. Our Engaging New Voters Report highlights tying voter engagement to your mission as a key motivator for potential voters. When speaking with folks at Feeding America, we discussed the anti-hunger policies at stake and how folks who utilize food pantries can vote to make a difference. See how MANNA Foodbank did this in North Carolina in 2018.

Access is critical. At YMCA, we discussed how access plays a critical role in who takes part in the voting process, particularly, for young people. Being prepared to address issues of access and common questions can help potential voters feel prepared for the election.Learn more about voting in your state. The YMCA of Greater New York hosted a voter registration drive last year to celebrate National Voter Registration Day.

If you’re interested in seeing more examples of how nonprofits married civic engagement to their core mission, be sure to check out our blog series “Mission Possible.” And if you have examples or lessons learned from your organization’s work, let us know!