Spring is upon us, and thank goodness, we finally have some decent weather! Let’s take advantage of the sunshine and warmth, and get out into our communities with some easy outreach. Here are 3 ideas that your Pro-Life Future chapter may consider.
Pro-Life Street Outreach
Find a corner of a popular street or even an overpass to organize your street outreach. Make sure that you are not blocking any businesses, and take a meeting to prepare your talking points, gather materials, and schedule your event.
- Pick a topic for your outreach. You may choose to talk about fetal development facts, Planned Parenthood exposé, pregnancy support and resources, or another relevant subject.
- Create good signage. Based on your topic, choose facts, resources, etc. that can fit easily on a sign. Try to keep your sign messages short and succinct. Make sure that your writing is bold and legible from a distance. If you choose a colored poster, use markers or paint that will contrast well. Use foam boards for more durability.
- Collect your materials. Ask your Pro-Life Future Director for materials for outreach– such as fetal development cards, “We don’t need Planned Parenthood” cards, or suggestions for other materials. Only take with you as much as you can hold in a purse or bag.
- Get out there. You may have lots of interested passersby or only a few engaged conversations. Either way, it’s worth the effort! Bring a positive attitude, and engage in respectful, patient dialogue with your community.
NOTICE: Please make sure that you are aware of your surroundings, especially traffic! Watch out for your fellow chapter members should there be protesting groups or busy surroundings.
Abortion Clinic Presence
Even when your local 40 Days for Life campaign is over, your group can continue to be a positive, life-affirming presence in front of your local abortion clinic. Whether you choose to stand with signs, pray (or stand quietly), or actively sidewalk help, your group has plenty of opportunities to bring love and hope to the sidewalk.
- Get trained. If your group intends to speak with and counsel clients, contact Beth Rahal for a training on how to be an effective and compassionate sidewalk helper.
- Be intentional about your date/time. If you know what days abortions are performed at the clinic, you may be more effective in your outreach. Ask local activists or your local 40 Days for Life Coordinator about this information.
- Unify your messaging. Decide as a group on what messages you want to communicate. These may include: “Pregnant? Call XXX-XXX-XXXX for free, confidential support.” “Pregnant? Need help? Let’s talk.” “Your story matters. You matter.” “Dear Mom. You are strong and capable.” “Pregnant? We can help.” “You are loved!”
- Bring your PRC materials. Have brochures or handouts ready with information for your local pregnancy resource center (PRC). Find out if your PRC is open on that day (during your outreach). Add your PRC’s number in your phone in case you need to alert them of a potential client.
- Prepare yourself emotionally. Sidewalk advocacy can be exhausting- physically and emotionally. Take some time for yourself before and after to process your emotions. You may want to spend time with your group after the event discussing what you experienced.
Letter Writing Campaigns
While this is not an outdoor activity, this is an easy activity for any chapter! You can do this at a meeting, as an outreach at a local church, or even with a youth group.
- Decide on your “who”. As a group, decide on who will receive these letters. Are you writing letters of support to local pregnancy resource center clients? Or writing letters to encourage abortion clinic workers to leave the industry? Or are you writing to local politicians?
- Discuss your messaging. Make sure that it is clear what types of messages are appropriate. You may wish to write out some sample messages and to write down any reference(s) that you may include.
- Contact your partners. Ask local groups (e.g. churches, youth groups) if they would be interested in contributing. If you chose to write to PRC clients, contact the PRC to confirm how many letters they are willing to accept.
- Check your letters before sending. If you chose to do this as a community outreach project (i.e. including a local church or group), you may need to review the letters before sending them. Weed out any poorly written or disrespectful messages.
This post was contributed by Beth Rahal, Pro-Life Future Director. Contact Beth at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. The overpass sign image (“Abortion takes human life”) and the blogpost image are from Chicago Pro-Life Future’s Facebook group found here. The letter writing image was submitted by Lehigh Valley Pro-Life Future.