At the heart of a transparent and accessible government, is an informed and engaged public actively participating in every aspect of decision making. When people are able to use their own voices and share their own stories, they become the most effective advocates for the issues affecting them the most. People should be encouraged and empowered to actively engage and drive dialogue with our elected officials through the democratic process. This is civic engagement and it allows people to secure personal prosperity and liberation, as well as growth and positive change for their own communities. By training Wyoming’s people in the strategies of governmental process, messaging, and advocacy, we expand our capacity to implement our vision.
What began as our Citizen Lobbyist Training, has now become SHAPE WY – our flagship civic engagement program designed to increase Wyoming’s people’s knowledge of and access to the Wyoming State Legislature. Through this training, we empower the public to engage in the legislative process while providing them with the tools and resources necessary to be effective.
Today, SHAPE WY runs twice a year – once during the legislative session and once during the interim period. The program is designed to educate participants on four principles:
Process – Learn the legislative process, how a bill becomes a law, the life of a bill, and the role of interim, joint, and special committees.
Messaging – Learn how to effectively craft and communicate your own personal story.
Advocacy – Learn how to make your voice heard across the state whether you’re at home or the Capitol.
Practice – Gain hands on experience applying the skills you’ve learned by directly lobbying our elected officials on the issues that matter most to you.
This year, our annual SHAPE WY training will be held on Monday, February 19th, 2018 in Cheyenne. Click here for more information and to register today.
What’s next after SHAPE WY? How do graduates apply the skills they’ve learned to a broader context and utilize them outside the Wyoming State Legislature? To help answer these questions, we’ve introduced ENGAGE WY – allowing graduates of SHAPE WY to launch and lead their own local ENGAGE WY chapters across Wyoming. By leading their own ENGAGE WY chapter, graduates will recruit, organize, and train others within their communities to advance our policy vision through social and direct action events.
We currently have two ENGAGE WY chapters, one in Cheyenne and one in Laramie.
If you are a graduate of SHAPE WY and would like to launch your own ENGAGE WY chapter in your local community, please contact our Communications & Outreach Director at firstname.lastname@example.org.