As you may have noticed, I have been falling behind on daily updates. The reason for this is that, in general, my projects are either based around a weekly event or are designed to take up an entire week. Therefore, I have decided to instead update whenever my projects are done, once or twice a week. This will help me focus more on the big picture of the work I am doing rather than day-to-day minutiae. I hope you like this format.
On Saturday, I attended an ACLU event in which I ‘tabled’ for Planned Parenthood. Tabling is what it sounds like: sitting at a table, promoting an organization and providing opportunities to volunteer. The ACLU event was at the University of Miami and taught those who attended how to organize politically. It was very well attended (over 1,000 people) and Planned Parenthood collected over a hundred names of people who were interested in volunteering. This is an incredible accomplishment for a non-profit, considering how difficult it can be to get volunteers. It was also a very rewarding experience, as some women who signed up mentioned that Planned Parenthood had provided them with great services.
On Monday, I was working once again with Engage Miami, and once again went through our call list. This time, not as many people could talk at the moment I called them. Therefore, we are going to experiment with different times in order to see when the highest number of people answer their phones and have time to talk.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, I worked on more politicians’ biographies, but this time from the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners. The way that local government in Miami works is that the county, which holds 35 cities (Miami, Coral Gables, Aventura, etc.) and other unincorporated territories, has more power than city councils, which operate on a smaller scale. There are thirteen districts within the county, each with their own commissioner. These commissioners are elected by constituents in their districts for four year terms. Most have served previously as mayors, city counselors, or in the Florida House of Representatives. Especially in a big county like Miami-Dade, the Board of County Commissioners has real political clout.
On Thursday, I went to Planned Parenthood and began calls to collect stories for the story bank. The story bank is filled with experiences from real, non-paid people who have used and enjoyed Planned Parenthood’s services. I have the outlines of the stories that people have already shared in clinic waiting rooms and am calling them to flesh out the details more. With permission, these stories are shared on social media, to news outlets, and during legislative hearings in order to show the human impact of Planned Parenthoods services. I was struck by how many of the stories collected just in March were about how women without health insurance could only rely on Planned Parenthood for affordable cancer screenings and birth control. It was very informative and showed me the importance of the work I am doing.
Friday, I was trained in voter registration for an event with Engage Miami next week. There are many complicated legalities to voter reg., which incur strict fines if not complied with. I am excited to begin registering young voters here in Miami!
Thank you for reading, and have a nice week.