Global Weekly Update November 7, 2011

November 7, 2011

Foreign Assistance Is Under Threat in the Senate. Make a Call Today!

Senate leadership has delayed the consideration of the foreign aid appropriations bill for fiscal year 2012. While it may not go to the floor this week, it could go to the floor quickly and with little notice, so our continued calls are important.   

This bill funds critical, life-saving, poverty-focused foreign assistance. But the funding is in danger. Your voice right now could help save it.

When this bill goes to the floor for a vote, many senators will offer dangerous amendments to slash funding. The House version of the foreign aid bill is already a dramatic $5 billion lower than the Senate version and 20 percent below the FY 2010 level. If the Senate and House come together to reconcile the two versions of the bill, and the Senate bill has been slashed, negotiations will start at a much lower funding level. The outcome for foreign aid and human lives could be grim.

We know that foreign aid cuts won’t help the deficit because foreign assistance is less than 1 percent of our nation’s budget. Consider what a Washington Post op-ed writer and speech writer for President Bush wrote earlier this year:

“Not all sacrifices are shared equally. Some get a pay freeze. Some get a benefit adjustment. Others get a fever and a small coffin. This is not fiscal prudence. It is the prioritization of the most problematic spending cuts — a disproportionate emphasis on the least justifiable reductions. One can be a budget cutter and still take exception to cuts at the expense of the most vulnerable people on earth.”

Defending smart foreign assistance investment is what we do best. Take a look at our newest action alert and mobilize your local RESULTS allies to make calls to your senators. So far, at least 23 activists have made calls. Let’s help that number grow by leaps and bounds. Speak out in defense of foreign assistance. We are poised to make a difference.

Be Inspired into Action for the End of AIDS. Join the November Global Conference Call.

Chris Collins, vice president and director of public policy at amFAR (The Foundation for AIDS Research) will be our special guest on the national grassroots conference call on Saturday, November 12. Gather your RESULTS group for an update on inspiring developments in the fight against AIDS that, if matched with political will, could lead us to an end of the AIDS epidemic. Isn’t it remarkable that we could be part of such a watershed moment in history? Make your plans for our 2 pm ET call, and dial in to (888) 409-6709 a few minutes before the call.

Check out Chris’ biography on the amfAR website and invite others to the call using this handy flyer.

World AIDS Day is December 1. We All Can Do Something. 

On World AIDS Day, we can all be part of the conversation about the dream of ending AIDS. Could it really be on the horizon? Don’t let December pass you by without taking the opportunity to do something within your group and within your community to mark World AIDS Day and link it to our on-going support of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

  • Have you pitched the idea of a World AIDS Day story to your local paper? Very soon, our World AIDS Day editorial packet will be posted in the press briefs section of our website.
  • Our November Action Sheet provides great guidance on writing a letter to the editor of your local media outlet about the end of AIDS. Rally your RESULTS allies and write to your paper for World AIDS Day. We have also created an action alert so that you can use our template to submit the letter on line to multiple papers. Remember to personalize your letter.
  • Have a small group discussion about a story like those found in the book 28 Stories of AIDS in Africa, or share the Topsy Foundation video chronicling the dramatic story of an AIDS patient.
  • Listen to and discuss Secretary Clinton’s November 8 speech on the idea of an AIDS-free generation.
  • Start talking now with your groups about attending the 2012 International Conference and inviting community allies who are engaged in HIV/AIDS work to come along with you. Our conference will dovetail with the International AIDS Conference, and the synergies have the potential to be powerful! We are committed to making this International Conference the biggest yet so that our voice on the Hill will be that much more impactful.

Grassroots Update — Education For All and Fundraising Successes!

We are already hearing news from the Global Partnership for Education replenishment conference being held in Copenhagen this week. We are learning that representatives from the U.S. have had access to the Schakowsky pledge support letter (for which we achieved 69 signatures) and your media hits (50 and counting!) and that these are making a difference. As expected, decision-making is anticipated to go until the last hours of the conference, so stay tuned for an update.

In the meantime, check our the blog post by Jen Maurer, Senior Policy Associate, that was written on the eve of her departure to the replenishment conference. You can also keep up the great work getting cosponsors for the Education for All Act. We currently have 53 cosponsors, which means we are over halfway to our goal of 100! Check out our Education for All take action page for ways to reach out to your representative.

Also, thank you Houston, Seattle, and Santa Fe for hosting fall fundraisers! Seattle held a dinner where Sir Richard Feachem spoke to a crowd of 175 people with a focus on global health. So far, they’ve raised $54,500! Houston’s 215 guests learned about global education and were inspired by Marianne Williamson (seen in this inspiring YouTube clip from the night). They’ve raised at least $60,000! Both groups were thrilled to have our own executive director, Dr. Joanne Carter, join them as well. Santa Fe hosted about 70 guests at a harvest dinner with a Head Start focus. Stay tuned for details of their success. We’re honored that these groups have worked tirelessly to raise the RESULTS message before their communities to ask support for our life-saving work. Thank you!

Good luck to groups organizing fundraisers in the Washington, DC, area (November 17), Boston (November 27), Indianapolis (November 28), and Bremerton (December 4). Contact Cindy Changyit Levin for support in holding a RESULTS fundraising event.

Foreign aid is neither a failure nor a panacea. It is, instead, an important tool of American policy that can serve the interests of the United States and the world if wisely administered.

— Retired Congressman Lee H. Hamilton

November 12: Global Conference Call. 2:00 pm ET. (888) 409-6709. Theme: The End of AIDS!

November 16: Second night of two-session RESULTS New Activist Orientation, 9 pm ET. (712) 432-3100, passcode 761262 (corrected)

November 17: Washington, DC Fundraiser. Contact Crickett Nicovich for more information. 

November 27: Boston Fundraiser. Contact Cindy Levin for more information.

November 28: Indianapolis Fundraiser. Contact Lisa Marchal for details. 

November 30: RESULTS Introductory Call. Register today!

December 4: Bremerton, WA, Fundraiser. Contact Beth Wilson for details.

December 12: RESULTS Introductory Call. Register today!

July 21–24, 2012: RESULTS International Conference in Washington, DC

RESULTS has moved! Our new address is:
RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund, 1730 Rhode Island Ave, NW, Suite 400, Washington DC 20036

No change to phone numbers; new fax number to be updated soon. Thanks for your patience as we complete our transition.

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