Frequently Asked Questions
Who can I ask about…?
We know you have questions about what to expect and how to prepare for Lobby Day. Hopefully, we'll answer most of them in these materials, but if you have any further questions please call or email your Bread for the World organizer.
How should I prepare for Lobby Day?
If you want to learn more about the issues, read about our Offering of Letters Campaign or visit our Resources page.
What should I wear?
Dress comfortably. Some men prefer a tie and jacket. Slacks and a casual shirt are also ok. Women often wear dresses or casual skirt or pants outfits. Both men and women should avoid shorts, blue jeans, and T-shirts, but be sure to wear comfortable shoes (the marble halls of Congress are notoriously hard on high heels, for example.) Remember that June in Washington can be quite hot and humid. Plan to bring an umbrella because summer showers are not unusual in the nation's capital! We also recommend bringing a refillable bottle of water.
I'm not sure I feel confident about lobbying…
Meeting your member of Congress, especially if you haven't lobbied before, can seem intimidating. Do you know the issue well enough? What if he or she asks a question you can't answer? Most people experience these feelings the first time they meet with their member of Congress. Be assured that we will give you the basics you need to make your congressional visit meaningful and enjoyable. Our June 12 morning briefing will give you thorough updates on the status of the Offering of Letters campaign. You will have time to ask questions and meet with your Bread organizers to go over final details. If you will be the only participant from your district and prefer not to lobby by yourself, please let us know at the morning briefing and we will arrange to have someone accompany you.
Before Lobby Day, please carefully read the information we've provided, which will help you prepare. This includes updates on the Offering of Letters campaign and its legislative progress.
Remember, you don't need to be an expert on an issue in order to lobby. You are a citizen raising a matter that is of serious concern to you with your elected representatives. If a congressional staff person asks questions or requests information that you cannot respond to during the visit, simply tell them you'll get back to them shortly. Bread for the World staff will assist in following up.
How do I get to the legislative briefing and Capitol Hill?
The legislative briefing will take place at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, which is three blocks from the Capitol Building at the corner of 3rd and A Streets, SE.
What can I do with my luggage while I'm lobbying?
If you are staying in Washington overnight on Tuesday, June 12 (this includes all Hunger Justice Leaders), you do not need to worry about this. If you plan to leave for home sometime on Tuesday, we will have space available at St. Mark's Episcopal Church for luggage and bags. Someone will monitor and help you with your luggage until the end of Lobby Day activities.
What about building security? Are there any items I can't bring to Lobby Day?
Absolutely! Much like air travelers, all visitors to congressional office buildings are screened by a magnetometer, and all items that are permitted inside the building are screened by an x-ray device. Aerosol containers, pointed objects (knitting needles, letter openers, etc.), pocket knives, mace or pepper spray, weapons of any kind, and bags larger than 14" wide by 13" high and 4" deep are prohibited. Security is very strict on Capitol Hill, so bring nothing with you that could cause you to have difficulty entering congressional buildings.