Summer Recess

Engage Your Legislators

In this week’s Must Know

  • Summer Recess, Engage Your Federal Legislators
  • The Goodies: information on important opportunities like trainings, funding, scholarship programs. This week’s highlight is an opportunity to win $10,000, a trip to Spain and tech help. Enter the The Power of Small: Entrepreneurs Strengthening Local Economies.

Summer Recess, Engage Your Federal Legislators

You, our members, have said what you value most about CAMEO is our advocacy. Now is the time, as part of your regular work flow, to engage with your legislators. Federal elected officials are on their summer break from August 6th through September 7th, otherwise known as August District Work Period. They are on vacation from DC, not from work.

With the federal budget under the knife, it’s more important than ever that CAMEO members let their representatives know what our priorities are. CAMEO and AEO’s Policy Team has been hard at work in Washington advocating on behalf our policy and funding priorities. Our policy agenda focuses on the development of strong and effective micro-business initiatives to assist underserved entrepreneurs in starting, stabilizing, and expanding their businesses. Now it’s your turn.

And we’ve made it easy for you.

1. Find your legislators if you don’t know them:

2. View last year’s District Meeting How-To webinar. It walks you through logistics of setting up the meeting, how to prepare and what to do afterwards.

3. To show the collective impact of our work, we recommend that you bring the following documents with you in addition to your program information:

4. Refer to other useful resources as necessary.

  • Guide to Meeting with Legislators
  • AEO’s “Engage & Empower” Toolkit – a one-stop resource for all things advocacy. Designed around three concepts – thinking strategically, communicating effectively, and building relationships – this guide will teach you everything you need to know to be an effective advocate.
  • California Micro-business Fact Sheet shows the important role micro-businesses play in California’s economy and job creation.

5. Let us know if you schedule a visit and what the outcome is. Email me!

The Goodies

New opportunities for trainings, conference information, funding, scholarships, and other information that have crossed our desks since the last Must Know: I have posted a running tab of current Goodies on the CAMEO website that lists items that were in past emails. Check it out to make sure you’re not missing anything, like grants whose deadlines are still alive!

In the News: CAMEO and Opening Doors are featured in a SacBee article about microlending in Sacramento! And so did CBS in Sacramento.

Job Opportunities: Valley Economic Development Center, Fresno EOC and Fresno CDFI, West Company and Renaissance Marin are hiring. Please check CAMEO’s job page for more information and other listings.

For Your Clients: CARAT offers free online trainings for small businesses through December. Check out their calendar.

Bay Area Office space: Renaissance Marin has two nice offices that they want to fill with compatible CAMEO members and/or lawyers, accountants, etc. that provide services to entrepreneurs. There is a corner office for $850 per month and an office right next to it for $650 per month that includes receptionist service, wifi and an opportunity to hold forums and seminars to provide information and promote services. Contact Boku Kodama by email or phone at 415.755.1115.

Win $10,000+: SAP and Ashoka Changemakers are hosting a competition – The Power of Small: Entrepreneurs Strengthening Local Economies. The competition is for organizations and partnerships with innovative strategies designed to help emerging entrepreneurs and small businesses grow and thrive in underserved communities. Learn more about the competition and how to apply. The deadline for submissions is September 5, 2012.

For Your Clients: More corporate contests! DailyCandy launched its third annual “Start Small, Go Big” campaign, aimed at helping small companies become “the next big thing.” The deadline is August 3. MillerCoors Urban Entrepreneur Series (MUES) business plan competition is now open and accepting entries and it’s specifically focused on minority businesses. The deadline is October 26. Fresno CDFI client, Jaymor Enterprises, is in the running to win a $250K grant from Chase/Living Social’s Mission Small Business challenge. Has anyone else had a client send in an application? If so, weigh in on our LinkedIn discussion.

Vote for Micro Enterprise: Julie Abrams, CEO of Women’s Initiative, is up for MORE Magazine’s HIRE CALLING: MORE’S JOB GENIUS AWARD, an award given to one of ten woman innovators who create jobs for women. Learn more or vote directly by August 31. The winner will receive $20,000 donated to her organization.

New Member Benefit: Through 2012, CAMEO members will receive a 20% discount to the Mighty Minnow Web School in Oakland. Mighty Minnow is picking up the role of teaching technology to non-profits as Compasspoint has discontinued its tech classes. For non-Bay Area members, remember that CAMEO can help defray travel costs. Contact CAMEO for the discount code and information on assistance.