Hi, my name is [name]. I am a constituent from [city, state]. Could I please speak with the legislative aide who deals with education and afterschool programs?
Congressional office: Let me see if XXX is available. May I ask what you are calling about?
I’m calling about the importance of afterschool and summer programs supported by the 21st Century Community Learning Centers initiative.
Congressional aide: Hi, this is XX.
Hi, this is [name] from [city, state]. I'm calling to say that I strongly urge the Congressperson to support the amendment for $1.191 million (last year's level) in funding for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative.
When marking up the FY18 education spending bill this Wednesday, please maintain all current funding for the 21st CCLC federal afterschool initiative. OPPOSE the $191 million cut that would fund afterschool BELOW the authorized level. Instead, provide level funding with last year – which was supported by 81 bipartisan members of Congress and more than 2,400 organizations.
Cutting afterschool funding as proposed in the education spending bill would leave 200,000 students and their families in communities across the nation struggling to find quality afterschool and summer learning opportunities.
Community Learning Center programs are locally-driven solutions that help families, employers, and students to get ahead.
Our community can’t afford for Community Learning Centers funding to be eliminated.
I’d like to share a little about our [program/community] and the difference this funding makes.
IF YOU ARE A PROVIDER OR AFTERSCHOOL PROFESSIONAL:
Here in [insert town/city], our program, [insert name of program], serves [insert number] kids and families. We depend on funds from the Community Learning Centers program to keep our kids safe and engaged after school.
[Share a bit about the community served by your program. You could touch on a short story of how the program has helped a particular youth or family.]
Our program has [mention any outcome data you may have, such as students attending school more often, doing better in school, reduction in behavior problems, etc.]
[Go to Closing Request]
IF YOU ARE A PARENT or CAREGIVER:
My children participate in the [name of program] here in [city, state]. The program is a lifeline for our family.
[Share how the program helps your family, and what would happen if it closes. For example:]
Having this program helps me, and other parents, keep our jobs. [Describe how the program helps you work, or what might happen if you did not have a program for your children].
My kids are thriving in the program. [Share one or two things that the program does for your children, such as how it has supported schoolwork, the development of new skills or experiences, relationships with caring adults, keeping active and away from screens or trouble]
Afterschool programs keep kids safe, help working families and help students achieve more.
I strongly urge the Congressperson to support the amendment for $1.191 million (last year's level) in funding for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) initiative.
Thank you for your time today, and for working for [state]’s kids and families.