Summer Advocacy Opportunities for Community Health Centers

Summer provides a variety of opportunities for health centers stay engaged in advocacy. Read on to learn about upcoming opportunities!
Summer provides many different advocacy opportunities for community health centers. By summer, the state legislative session has adjourned, and Congress returns to their districts at various points over the summer on recess. With elected officials returning to their districts, it is the perfect time to invite them out for a visit. In addition, August marks National Health Center Week, a celebration of health centers that lends itself to advocacy and community engagement. 
National Health Center Week (August 4-10) 
National Health Center Week is an annual celebration to raise awareness about the mission and accomplishments of health centers. This year, National Health Center Week will be held from August 4-10 with the theme: Powering Communities through Caring Connections. During this week, health centers often host a variety of events such as back-to-school events, health fairs, staff appreciation events, and more!
If your health center is hosting any summer events or events during National Health Center Week, please make sure to submit them to TPCA by emailing and submitting them to NACHC
The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) will be holding a National Health Center Week Kick-off Webinar on Wednesday, May 22 at 3 PM (ET). The webinar will cover this year’s theme, activities, and opportunities to mobilize and strengthen relationships your community. The webinar is open to all. 
Invite Elected Officials to your Health Center 
National Health Center Week occurs during a Congressional recess, when members will be back in their respective states and districts. Beyond National Health Center Week, members of Congress will be on recess around the fourth of July holiday and for the entire month of August. Take a look at the 2024 Congressional Calendar for a fuller picture of when members will be available.  
Recess is the best time to invite members of Congress out to your health center for a visit or to participate in an event you are hosting. If you are unable to host the members themselves, an alternative is to host their staff. Summer also provides opportunities for state legislators to spend more time in their communities. The state legislative session adjourned at the end of April, allowing members to return home and spend the summer with their constituents. If you would like to host a member of the state legislature this summer, you can find contact information on the Tennessee General Assembly website
For more information and assistance about inviting a member of Congress or a state legislator to your center, please reach out to  
Become an Advocacy Center of Excellence (ACE) 
Health centers and primary care associations have the option to become Advocacy Centers of Excellence (ACEs) through NACHC. The ACE designation is designed to create a culture of advocacy at health centers by supporting the tools and foundation needed to meaningfully engage with elected officials at all levels of government. Many health centers are already taking steps toward the ACE requirements, but this program provides a more formalized process to grow advocacy capacity at health centers. Learn more about the ACE program here.