THE IMPORTANCE OF CELEBRATING YOUR SUCCESSES
Success in advocacy isn’t about just getting a bill passed into law and ensuring that law is implemented in the way it was intended. Celebrating your successes throughout the entire process is important. Progress IS success. And because very little happens quickly in legislation and regulation, you should enter the advocacy process with a “never give up” attitude. When you celebrate your successes, you remind your advocates to focus on the positive, not the negative. When you celebrate your successes, you remind your advocates of the one common goal you set out to achieve together. Lastly, it allows people to believe in the concept that setting realistic goals can help them to accomplish anything. Encourage your advocates to celebrate their small successes as well as significant ones. Dedicate a section of your website for success-testimonials and stories; a place where they can go to learn about what other advocates have been up to, and a place where they can share what they have been doing on a local level. Make it easy for them to share! Create a template where they can enter the key information, and then allow for an area to share their experience. To learn more about creating a template, reference the “Advocate Template for Sharing Stories and Successes” resource and support tool at the end of this guide.
EXAMPLES OF WHAT SUCCESS CAN LOOK LIKE • Scheduling a legislative meeting to address an issue • Raising awareness about an issue • Gaining support for a piece of legislation • Speaking out on behalf of patients who needed a voice • Developing positive relationships with state legislators and their staff, so come the time you need something, they are there to help • Educating elected officials and regulatory agencies about the importance of an issue to you and others • Testifying before a committee • Securing a vote in support of your position • Receiving a response to a submitted letter or email
When you have these successes, it is important to both share and celebrate them. It will unite your advocates, inspire them and remind them that they are all working toward one common goal.
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