“Show Up and Vote” Campaign

Type of Activity: Project Grant
Grantee: Global Citizen
Amount: Up to $325,000 in 2016

What is the “Show Up and Vote” Campaign?
Global Citizen is a social action platform for a global generation that wants to solve the world’s biggest challenges by learning about issues, taking action on what matters most, and joining a community committed to social change. Over the last five years, millions of global citizens around the world took six million actions to solve the world’s biggest challenges. In 2016, Global Citizen’s “Show Up and Vote” effort will focus on increasing voter registration and participation among younger Americans through a series of events and concerts with high-profile artists.

Why do we think this project is a good idea?
Registration and participation among younger voters is historically low, and Democracy Fund Voice believes Global Citizen’s “Show Up and Vote” campaign is the kind of cultural effort that reaches and engages young people where they are — through concerts and events, and digital and social outreach.

How is Voice supporting the project?
Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant to Global Citizen, which is managed by the Global Poverty Project, to support the “Show Up and Vote” Campaign in the amount of up to $325,000 in 2016.

National Voter Registration Day

Type of Activity: Project Grant
Grantee: National Voter Registration Day
Amount: Up to $250,000 in 2016

What is National Voter Registration Day?

National Voter Registration Day (NVRD) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit effort to raise national awareness of voter registration deadlines in every election cycle. On September 27, 2016, NVRD will host hundreds of events in order to reach and register eligible Americans across the country.

Why do we think this project is a good idea?

Democracy Fund Voice believes an engaged citizenry is central to a responsive republic, and our elections are at their strongest when more eligible voters punch their ballots. NVRD leverages an array of technology, partnerships, and culture to engage and register eligible Americans.

How is Voice supporting the project?

Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant to National Voter Registration Day, administered by the Bus Federation Education Fund, in the amount of up to $250,000 for voter outreach and registration in 2016.

Vote.org’s Mobile Outreach Strategies

Type of Activity: Project Grant
Grantee: Vote.org
Amount: Up to $75,000 in 2016

What is Vote.org?

Vote.org is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that operates at the intersection of technology and democracy. The organization’s online tools – which allow registration, absentee ballots, and checking a voter’s status – leverage technology to help ensure Americans have the modern, responsive election system they deserve.

Why do we think this project is a good idea?

Research suggests mobile outreach to eligible voters, combined with email outreach, can increase participation in elections. Vote.org’s efforts to expand the impact of their participation tools through additional outreach – and publish the results of their experiments – aligns with Democracy Fund Voice’s belief that strong voter turn out is best for our republic.

How is Voice supporting the project?

Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant to Vote.org of up to $75,000 to support a civic engagement project that digitally provides registered voters with important logistical and scheduling voter information in the 2016 election.

NALEO Education Fund’s Voter Hotline

Type of Activity: Project Grant
Grantee: NALEO Education Fund
Amount: Up to $150,000 in 2016

What is the NALEO Education Fund and its Voter Hotline?

The NALEO Education Fund is the nation’s leading 501(c)3 non-profit organization that facilitates full Latino participation in the American political process, from citizenship to public service. NALEO Education Fund has operated 888-VE-Y-VOTA, the only year-round, live English/Spanish bilingual voter information and protection hotline in the nation, since 2004. The goal of the hotline is to demystify the voting process and help Latinos feel confident about casting a ballot.

Why do we think this project is a good idea?

Democracy Fund Voice believes ensuring Americans from all walks of life can participate in our elections is key to our election system’s integrity. NALEO Education Fund’s nonpartisan outreach and provision of timely information on state election practices and procedures to Spanish speaking voters is one way to maintain confidence in the responsiveness of our political system.

How is Voice supporting the project?

Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant to NALEO Education Fund of up to $150,000 to provide Spanish language resources to voters in the 2016 election.

U.S. Election Assistance Commission

Democracy Fund Voice has engaged in direct advocacy and made an advocacy grant related to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. Each effort is described below.

Type of Activity: Direct Advocacy in 2014

What is the Election Assistance Commission?

The Election Assistance Commission was established by the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA). The U.S. Election Assistance Commission is an independent, bipartisan commission charged with developing guidance to meet HAVA requirements, adopting voluntary voting system guidelines, and serving as a national clearinghouse of information on election administration. The Commission also accredits testing laboratories and certifies voting systems, as well as audits the use of HAVA funds. Other responsibilities include maintaining the national mail voter registration form developed in accordance with the National Voter Registration Act of 1993.

Why do we think the Election Assistance Commission is a good idea?

There are nearly 8,000 local election jurisdictions across the United States – each one responsible for supporting the administration of one of the most important civic activities in our democracy. The U.S. Election Assistance Commission is an independent federal bipartisan agency that provides critical support, resources, and standards. Their efforts ensure that the local and state officials in charge of each of these jurisdictions are able to ensure that our elections will be accessible, fair, and cost effective.

Among other tasks, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission examines how elections are administered to find patterns of problems and models for solving them. The Commission creates voting systems standards and oversees the certification process to ensure machines (and any upgrades or patches) are reliable, accessible, and secure. It creates resources for local officials on how best to train poll workers, manage polling places, and design voting materials. The EAC also provides comprehensive data to election officials, advocates, and the public on how elections are administered—and allows others to assess how they might be improved.

How is  Voice supporting the success of the Election Assistance Commission?

Democracy Fund Voice staff worked with a coalition of organizations in 2014 to help encourage the United States Senate to confirm three commissioners to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. The Commission had been without a quorum since 2010 – which prevented the agency from fulfilling its responsibilities. In December of 2014, the United States Senate confirmed three nominees to the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. That confirmation provided the agency with a quorum and enabled it to move forward on long-delayed tasks like updating its certification standards for voting technology, pursuing solutions to the voting machine crisis, and bringing election officials, experts, and advocates together to solve challenging problems of the day.

Democracy Fund Voice continues to work with leaders in the field to support the agency and its ongoing funding, because the EAC’s guidance and support for local election offices provides resources that cannot be found in most local or state elections offices.  The Commission serves to support best practices and promote cutting edge resources for its constituency of elections administrators (and the end users—the voters).

The latest:

Letter to Oppose House Resolution 634: the Election Assistance Commission Termination Act – Democracy Fund Voice urges Congress to oppose this bill, which will put an end to the indispensable work of the Election Assistance Commission. The EAC acts as a liaison between the states and the federal government, provides federal agencies, states, and the public with national election data and trends, and serves a vital role in setting voting equipment standards. We urge Congress to support the ongoing existence of this small but effective group of public servants.

 

Type of Activity: Advocacy Grant
Grantee: Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
Amount: Up to $143,523 in 2015

What is the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights?

Founded in 1950, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition of more than 200 national civil and human rights organizations charged by its diverse membership to promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States. Through advocacy and outreach to targeted constituencies, the Leadership Conference works toward a goal of a more open and just society – an America as good as its ideals. As part of its work to support the right to vote, the Leadership Conference advocates for Congress to continue to support and fully fund the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) in order to ensure that it is able to fulfill its important mission.

Why is this advocacy project important?

Last year, the United States Senate confirmed three commissioners to serve on the U.S. Election Assistance Commission after several years in which the agency lacked the quorum necessary for it to act. Now that the agency has regained its governing quorum, it is essential that the EAC continue to have sufficient resources to fulfill its responsibilities. Democracy Fund Voice supported the Leadership Conference’s advocacy on behalf of a strong EAC to ensure that government officials, Members of Congress, and the public understand the important, nonpartisan role that it plays in sustaining the health of our system of elections.

How is Voice supporting the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights?

Democracy Fund Voice approved a grant of up to $142,523, which includes a subgrant of $69,300 to the NAACP’s National Voter Fund, in 2015 to support advocacy for continuing federal support of the EAC’s appropriation.