Advocacy Project---The topic is the Head Start Program and why funding the program at the state level is important. Advocacy means to add a voice. In particular it means to speak out for those who can’t and to educate the public and private sector regarding the need for change. This assignment is composed of four parts which will be brought together and submitted as a folder. Topic and statement of need – you will need to select a topic on which to advocate. The topic needs to be one about which you feel passionately and that relates directly to your knowledge of the needs of our families and communities. Available research, theory and/or application must support your topic and will be included in the summary section. The statement of need is a brief (under 50 words) statement of why this is an issue and why the general public should share your concern. Your topic must be in support and agreement with the NAEYC Code of Ethics as well as best practices. Your topic should be an issue that has a realistic plan for resolution and is directly linked to your personal philosophy of early childhood statement. Identification and Documentation – you will need to identify 3 possible recipients of an advocacy message that you will create on this topic. For each person identified provide documentation on why this person was selected and how he/she may be in a position to enact the change needed to solve the issue. Summary sheet and presentation – you will create a summary (1 – 2 pages) written in your own words on your topic. The summary sheet should include an opening paragraph stating the issue, and reasons why we, as representatives of the community, should support the cause. Summary sheet should also include at minimum of three important documented facts or statistics that add to the support of your point of view. Websites and other sources that were used to research the project must also be included in the summary. You will present the topic to your class using good communication skills and an organized presentation (approximately 5 minutes.) The advocacy letter – using standard business style (including your home address), write a letter to the appropriate recipient. The letter must contain the following: Appropriate greeting and salutation – be sure to address the recipient in accordance with their position Introduction of yourself and your statement of concern Supporting citations and facts – it is best to keep this to one or two key facts Specific action requested – offer the recipient a specific course of action you’d like for him/her to take to help resolve the issue. Appropriate conclusion – include a thank you for the recipient’s time and effort regarding your cause. Additional considerations: Be sure your letter is well-organized and written in a professional tone – it is a representation of you as an early childhood education professional Be sure your letter is written from you as an individual – do not reference your place of employment without specific prior permission from your employer – in some cases advocacy letters are considered lobbying which can threaten the not-for-profit status of some agencies. Be sure your letter is free of spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors – it is a representation of the children and families for which you are advocating.