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2012 Offering to Keep Pressure on Congress

Bread campaign breaks new ground

October 2011

You can expect to see materials for Bread’s 2012 Offering of Letters in early January—but this campaign will include a new twist. The 2012 Offering—called “Expanding the Circle of Protection”—will continue to rely on the work of Bread activists and partners, but the format will be slightly different.

Thousands of Bread activists and partners have urged Congress this year to create a circle of protection around funding for programs that are vital to hungry and poor people. Through visits, phone calls, memo campaigns, personal letters and emails, activists have kept the needs of vulnerable people before Congress.

Bread will continue pushing Congress to protect these programs throughout 2012, as lawmakers will be focused on finding ways to reduce the federal deficit. As members of Congress look for cuts, we want them to protect programs that give hungry and poor people in this country and abroad the tools they need to lift themselves out of poverty.

Bread’s 2012 Offering of Letters printed handbook, available in January, will convey this broad campaign theme and include regular features of previous handbooks—an overview of the issues, worship aids, how to plan an Offering of Letters, stories, and much more.

But within this broader campaign will be four mini-campaigns, which will address specific legislative topics that will come before Congress in 2012: nutrition, poverty-focused development assistance, tax policy, and food aid.

Your church, campus, or community group will be able to choose which mini-campaign(s) you’d like to focus on—or you can choose them all. After you decide, simply go to www.bread.org/go/OL2012 for specific information on each campaign. You’ll be able to find and download multimedia stories, charts and graphs, sample letters, and more resources that are tailored to each mini-campaign topic.

Depending on how the legislative year progresses, your church or group may want to do more than one mini-campaign. When the appropriations process is in full swing, for example, an Offering of Letters—especially in a district or state represented on the appropriations committees—might focus on poverty-focused development assistance within the budget debate.

Running several campaigns simultaneously will allow Bread members and partners to respond more quickly to what’s happening in Congress. This is crucial, given what’s at stake.

The cuts members of Congress are considering are in the range of $4 trillion over the next decade, which could result in the most severe cuts to programs for hungry and poor people in Bread’s history.

We want Congress to exempt programs for hungry and poor people from cuts. Bread’s 2012 Offering of Letters offers a powerful way to keep this message before Congress during the hard debates of 2012.

To pre-order the printed handbook for the 2012 Offering of Letters, call 1-800-822-7323, ext. 1072 or email publications@bread.org.

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