1. Work with FCNL

Advocacy Teams

Quaker Vision. Collective Action. Learn More December 11!

By Maiya Zwerling, Teresa Rugg, Emily Savin

Advocacy Teams are Quakers and friends from across the country who use their power as constituents to make change in Washington. Join us for a conference call on December 11 to learn more about how you can be a part.

Intro | Starting a Team | Joining a Team | 2017 Campaign | Why Advocacy Teams

What You'll Do

Ready to Start an Advocacy Team?

Fill out a quick survey to assess whether an Advocacy Team is a good fit for you.

Find out 

The power of Advocacy Teams comes from the strong relationships we build with Congress grounded in mutual respect and listening.

You will build an ongoing relationship with your members of Congress.

You will learn how to work with the media to see the news you want.

You will foster a network of advocates in your community.

You will help your members of Congress become champions for peace and justice.

You will change Washington for the better.

Advocacy Teams at Annual Meeting 2016

6 Steps to Starting an Advocacy Team

1. Tell us you’re interested

Think Advocacy Teams are the right fit for you? The first step is easy: answer a few questions at fcnl.org/getstarted and we’ll get in touch to start you on steps 2-5!

2. Take the leap

We’ll support you to host an advocacy workshop that starts your team with momentum. To prepare, gather 3-8 people to join a one-hour Host Committee call with FCNL. We’ll introduce you to the Advocacy Teams program and get you started with recruiting the 15-30 people for an advocacy workshop.

3. Launch a team

An FCNL staff member will lead a workshop in your community. The group will dive into our approach to advocacy, the campaign, and effective grassroots tools for social change. All you have to do is bring the people, find a location, and provide some simple supplies. You and FCNL decide whether to move forward with a team.

4. Build your skills

New teams take part in a one-time series of four trainings to build your team’s structure and get you ready to lobby as a group.

5. Sustain the momentum

Meet in person with your team once a month around a national call to hear from experts, celebrate, and learn from other advocates. In these meetings, you’ll take action and plan for the month to come. One or more delegates from each team join an additional call twice a month for legislative updates, training, and collaboration.

6. Make real change

Advocacy Teams act for change on a regular basis, using lobbying and media engagement as their tools. In the first two months, FCNL Advocacy Teams organized 80 lobby visits and published 30 letters to the editor in support of the Iran nuclear deal. Since then, the network of teams expanded rapidly, growing ten times bigger and taking on campaigns for criminal justice reform and a moral budget.

Join a Team

Option 1: Join an existing team

Is there a team near you? Email maiya@fcnl.org to get in touch with the team, and listen to a recorded call introducing you to the program.

Option 2: Find an advocacy workshop

We may be in the process of starting an Advocacy Team near you. Look for upcoming workshops in your area.

Event Upcoming Advocacy Workshops 

We're on the road giving you the skills you need to effect real, concrete change with Congress. We hope you can join us for a workshop in your area, as we launch new Advocacy Teams around the country.

Our Campaign in 2017: Rein in Pentagon Spending

Protecting people – protecting our country – means protecting our security across the board. Simply spending more and more money on war has not and will not make us safe. Being safe also means ensuring that each person has the food, shelter, and medical care they need to live with dignity.

In 2017, we’re pouring $600 billion per year into the Pentagon, funding wars around the world that do more harm than good. Even after more than 100,000 U.S. military troops withdrew from Iraq, real Pentagon spending is at the same levels as it was at the height of the Cold War.

At the same time, Congress is developing plans to dismantle the social safety net, claiming we don’t have the funds to maintain programs that keep 38 million people out of poverty.

We are losing sight of our priorities as a country. In the coming year, Congress will decide if our government will pour increasingly more money into the Pentagon while cutting programs that protect the security of our communities at home. Advocacy Teams urge our senators and representatives to aggressively rein in Pentagon spending.

With FCNL, we get to the root of problems by changing the systems and policies that drive them. We believe that Congress has immense power to effect positive change. It's our job to make sure they use it. This year, we're working to rein in Pentagon Spending.

Your Advocacy Can Change Washington

70 years of witness in Washington has shown us that when people talk to their representatives, change happens. A recent survey of hundreds of Congressional staff conducted by the Congressional Management Foundation confirms that in-person lobby meetings with constituents are the most effective way to influence the policy decisions of their members. That's why FCNL has been building our program to empower grassroots advocacy in order to foster congressional champions for peace and justice.

Advocacy Teams were founded in June, 2015, recognizing this need for deep, relationship-driven constituent advocacy. There are now dozens of teams with hundreds of people around the country.

Current Advocacy Team Members

Advocacy Resource Advocacy Teams Toolkit 

Advocacy Teams can find lobbying, media, and organizing resources and report back on their work.

Maiya Zwerling

  • National Organizing Manager

As the National Organizing Manager, Maiya Zwerling works to strengthen and deepen FCNL's grassroots. She founded and coordinates the FCNL Advocacy Teams, a network of hundreds of Quakers and friends leading lobbying efforts to build congressional champions for peace and justice. Maiya oversees the 2017 grassroots campaign to block increases in Pentagon Spending.

Teresa Rugg

  • Consultant, Advocacy Teams Trainer

Teresa Rugg supports new and prospective Advocacy Teams to launch and develop deep advocacy skills.

Emily Savin

  • Consultant, Advocacy Teams Trainer

Emily Savin supports new and prospective Advocacy Teams to launch and develop deep advocacy skills.