Create Your Own Event
6 things you can do in October to make a difference in November (and beyond)
Whether you intend to run for office or want to help colleagues who do, the weeks prior to an election provide a wealth of opportunities to gain experience and expertise.
Is running for office in your future? Try someone else’s campaign on for size!
Have you ever thought about running a campaign? Working on a campaign right now is a terrific learning experience – no risk, all reward!
Neither? Improve the health of your community by registering voters and encouraging them to vote! Public transportation, housing, education, parks and recreation, and small business development are social drivers of health and they are all on the ballot this November! The candidates we elect in November will be making decisions about all of this and more for the next two, four, or six years.
Check out Healing Politics’ social media for advice and tips about what you can do right now to get involved! Then, share your October “event” with us on social media – show us what you did and share what you learned.
How can you Create Your Own Event? Here are some ideas:
- Register Voters. (non-partisan activity) – While laws regarding voter registration vary from state to state, it is never too late to encourage eligible voters to register. Vote411 is one of many resources. Vot-ER is focused on integrating voter registration into the health care delivery system. Request a badge and start registering voters. Not sure where to begin? Start with your friends, colleagues, and family!
- Become a Poll Worker. (non-partisan activity) – Poll workers work with election administrators to help administer elections by doing things like setting up the polling location and checking in voters. Training and working polls can be different from state to state. You can learn more at Power the Polls, a non-partisan initiative.
- Get involved in teaching others the importance of voting. (non-partisan activity) The midterms provide “a teachable moment.” CIRCLE, the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning & Engagement recently released a report with data and recommendations on developing the next generation of voters (summarized in Teen Vogue). There are many national and local programs working to ensure that all Americans understand the importance of their vote. One example is the Democracy Class Movement organized by Rock the Vote.
- Volunteer for a candidate of your choice – Every candidate’s website will have a volunteer tab or form to complete. Choose a candidate you’d like to support, visit their website, and sign up! You can canvass (“door knocking”), make phone calls, send texts, or help with campaign events. It’s great practical training!
- Donate – You can always click the “donate” button on the website but why not donate in person? Attending a political fundraiser is another great way to learn about one of the most important aspects of campaigning – raising money. Even a small donation sends a message of support that candidates appreciate.
- Volunteer for the political party of your choice. Political parties have an entire governance system unto themselves. There are volunteer and leadership opportunities at the federal, state, county, and precinct levels. If you are thinking about running for office, running a candidate’s campaign or just want to understand how a political party works, volunteering at the county or precinct level is a great way to begin networking and building party support. VoteSmart.org has a list of the 52 political parties in the United States with contact information and a link to their website. Ballotpedia has a list of political parties who have qualified for the ballot in each state as of December 2021.