The International Conference is Over. Now the REAL Change Work Begins!

July 22, 2014
by Carly Pildis, Outreach and Advocacy Associate

This year 100 REAL Change Fellows joined us at the 2014 RESULTS/REF International Conference. We heard their voices in plenaries, skills workshops, and on the Hill. They spent long hours learning everything they could about how RESULTS works to end poverty and preparing to take those lessons home. While I taught them everything I know, I think they learned the most from all of you!

Now they are rolling up their sleeves and getting to work in their communities. Over the next several months they will receive biweekly training from me (with guest appearances by many other experts) and work on their own set of goals to help strengthen RESULTS and fight poverty at home and abroad. This month they are working to follow up with their members of Congress and set up in-district lobby meetings. In August they will serve as advocates in these meetings and in town hall meetings. In September they will be holding outreach events to strengthen existing RESULTS groups and build new ones nationwide. In October they will be out in full force holding members of Congress accountable as they run for re-election. For more about their goals for the year, see my June blogpost.

REAL Changers who work in areas with existing groups will be in contact with group leaders and group members to collaborate. If your group needs a leadership position filled or additional support, this can be a great way to work with your local REAL Changer(s). Many REAL Changers have told me how inspired they were by long-time advocates, and they are excited to work with you this year!

RESULTS is excited to be on the forefront of training the next generation of anti-poverty advocates nationwide. It’s going to be an incredible year for our REAL Change Fellows. We know that your leadership and experience will be invaluable in this process. Thank you for your partnership in this new, exciting endeavor. For a full list of fall trainings and goals, check out the list below!


Carly Pildis, Outreach and Advocacy Associate


July Goals

  • Learn how to set up an in-district meeting.
  • Learn how to follow up with members of Congress (MoCs) after meetings.
  • Continue mapping your community and building lists for outreach.
  • Follow up from International Conference lobby meetings in DC.
  • Put in an in-district meeting request and follow up regularly.
  • Optional: throw a house party and tell friends, those who helped you get to DC, and other people you think might be interested about the conference and see if they would want to partner with you.


July 9: “It was so nice to meet you. Did you do what I wanted?”: Following up with your member of Congress – Skills: Following up with MoCs, building relationships with MoCs and their staff

July 23: “Welcome home, Senator!” Meeting with your MoCs in-district – Skills: Getting an in-district meeting, how to engage with candidate at a town hall


August Goals

  • Learn how to hold an outreach event.
  • Learn how to organize students and others on campus effectively.
  • Meet with an MoCr in-district.
  • Engage with MoCs or candidates at four town hall events or other campaign events.
  • Set up three 30-minute one-on-one conversation  with potential allies and partners to see if they would like work with you on an outreach event.


August 6: How to throw a great outreach event – Skills: Doing outreach and grassroots organizing

August 27: Back to School! Tips for organizing college, graduate and medical school students – Skills: Engaging students, campus organizing, Engaging with students if you are not a student


September Goals

  • Learn how to hold a successful outreach event.
  • Learn how to hold MoCs accountable during election season.
  • Have three one-on-ones with potential allies to help promote outreach event.
  • Throw a successful outreach event.


September 3: Open coaching session preparing for outreach events – Skills: Outreach

September 17: Make the most of midterms: How to hold your MoCs accountable while they run for office – Skills: Bird-dogging, coaching other activists, planning group bird dogging events.


October Goals

  • Learn how to write a letter to the editor.
  • Attend at least four events with candidates/MoCs and try to ask a question.
  • Have 3 – 5 people attend bird-dogging events with you.
  • Have a follow-up meeting with those who attended your outreach event and have them listen to RESULTS national grassroots conference call.


October 8: Turning an outreach event into a community of activists – Skills: Follow up, persistence, building group infrastructure

October 29: How to write a letter to the editor (LTE) – Skills: LTE writing


November Goals

  • Learn how to throw a fundraiser.
  • Learn how to engage with freshman members of Congress.
  • Write one letter to the editor a week.
  • Publish an LTE.
  • Establish inviting committee for new group, if launching one. Determine best time for possible group start (may be next semester if you are a student).
  • Put in request for district lobby meeting for December, with extra priority for any new MoCs.


November 5: “Santa Baby, put donations under the tree”: your guide to hosting a holiday fundraiser – Skills: Throwing a fundraiser

November 19: “Hi, new members of Congress! I’m your constituent.” – Skills: Engaging with first-time MoCs, building relationships with new members of Congress

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