Upswell Pop-Up

May 11, 2021

You Can’t Change Systems Without Advocacy

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You can’t change systems without advocacy. And the truth is that we wouldn’t find ourselves at this hopeful inflection point without the tireless efforts of our advocates. Just think about the last 18 months. Record-breaking voter turnout in multiple elections. Massive mobilization to get nonprofits, frontline workers, and communities billions of dollars in relief they need to survive. Close collaboration with the new Congress and Administration to ensure we’re making the very most of this new moment of national opportunity.

These are massive successes for civil society. They didn’t happen by luck or accident. This Pop-Up will explore the mechanics of effective advocacy. With transformative change within reach, we’ll learn with some of the most influential advocates about what our ongoing crises have taught us – and how we can (and must) use collective action to move quickly toward a healthier and more equitable future.

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2:00–2:10 pm ET

Welcome and Housekeeping

2:10–2:55 pm ET

Driving Action in Times of Opportunity and Resistance

Progress is rarely a straight path, especially for issues as complicated as voting rights, immigration, or environmental justice. Many of the most notable examples of policy progress and racial justice victories in the United States resulted from relentless advocacy - navigating starts, stops, and detours that span decades. In 2021, changes in power from City Hall to Washington, DC present new opportunities for nonprofits to advocate for audacious new policies that help all people thrive. Hear how advocates have navigated their organizations, coalitions, and movements to leverage political opportunity, remain steadfast in the face of pushback, and ultimately conquer the rollercoaster of collective progress.

3:00–3:55 pm ET
Breakout 1A

The Fight for Democracy Continues

Here’s your chance to unpack the policy solutions that make it easier for nonprofits to engage voters in the next election. Time is of the essence, since hundreds of new policies have been proposed in 47 states that could significantly impact voter access, boundaries for voting districts, government funding, and nonprofits’ ability to help their communities be heard for the next decade. The tremendous voter participation of the 2020 election was the culmination of decades of work by nonprofits nationwide. During this session, nonprofit leaders will cut through partisan jargon dominating the news to the specific policies that can protect and build upon nonprofits’ successful voter engagement.

3:00–3:55 pm ET
Breakout 1B

Leadership Role of Youth in Advocacy

In the present moment and throughout history, youth have catalyzed social movements through direct, active resistance to oppressive systems and conditions. Less recognized however, is the leadership of young people in advocacy and policy spaces, and their work across movements to create transformative change. Join youth and young adult leaders as they discuss their advocacy priorities of the current moment, share strategies and examples of authentic youth collaboration, and address the complexities of coalition-building. Young people are already leading – are we ready to follow?

4:00–4:55 pm ET
Breakout 2A

Championing Your Board as a Powerful Advocacy Voice

Nonprofit organizations have a unique opportunity and a responsibility to advocate on behalf of the communities they serve and to elevate the experiences people and communities most affected by the work. The Board of Directors should be at the heart of that effort. Join us to explore how a diverse board driving racial equity can lead an organization to effectively elevate voices and create change. This session will provide insights and practical tips to help your organization’s board take a mission focused approach to public policy issues and local advocacy. This session will both challenge and help participants understand how to step into that important role.

4:00–4:55 pm ET
Breakout 2B

The Power of Pausing for Self and Community Care

How are you doing? In these hectic times, it’s easy to lose sight of the importance of self-care and refilling your spiritual well. Taking a pause for contemplative practice – even a brief one – is a vital way to center, re-ground, and re-energize yourself each day. In this session, we’ll explore the importance of completive practice in the service of self/community care, while engaging in two guided practices: the pure breath technique and a loving kindness meditation.

You’ll experience how the power of the pause, meditation, and reflection can help you manage your tireless work and avoid burnout.

Event Speakers
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