Bolder Advocacy

For the Mom Who Wants Social Change

Given its political roots, it’s not surprising that Mother’s Day has become a focal point for advocacy on important causes. The campaigns tend to follow one of two approaches:

Campaigns FOR mothers and families

action-healthcareTraditionally, activists have used Mother’s Day to draw attention to the problems that affect mothers and their children directly – limited access to healthcare, expensive childcare, poverty, etc.

Mamas Day Our Way – This campaign from Forward Together is using a gorgeous collection of e-cards to make Mother’s Day more inclusive. The cards highlight LGBT families, grandmothers raising kids, immigrant mothers, etc. It also encourages action on policy issues, like marriage equality and a path to citizenship. While the campaign is national in scope, there is a card urging action to help low-income mothers in California (a cause which AFJ’s Nayantara Mehta has been very involved in promoting!).

The Thank You Mom Project – The Asian American Pacific Islander advocacy group, 18 Million Rising, has launched this both to enable people to honor their heritage during Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month and to encourage the AAPI community to support fair and just immigration reform. Watch this multilingual video and feel the goosebumps.

Campaigns BY mothers

One remarkable trend in the past year or two has been the proliferation of advocacy groups led by mothers. Of course, mothers have always been active in influencing policy and organizing for social and economic justice.

But the rise of organizations very explicitly identified with “mothers” or “families” is a savvy messaging move. Their very name helps to convey the idea that their cause is critical in some way to the welfare of mothers or families.

Moms Demand Action on Gun Control – Their Mother’s Day campaign focuses on  honoring gun violence victims and their families and encouraging action for stricter gun laws.

Moms Clean Air Force – They are urging First Mom Michelle Obama to speak up about climate change to ensure clean air for children.

Moms Rising – The mother of all mom-led activist groups, Moms Rising is using their silly yet serious “Mom Dance” video to raise awareness of issues affecting mothers, from comprehensive immigration reform to flexible work policies.

What great Mother’s Day campaigns have you seen? Let us know in the comments!