Join us in reading inspirational and informative articles we have cultivated from across the web. If you have found an article you feel is inspirational, explores current research, or is a knowledgeable piece of literature and would like to share with us please send an e-mail here.
How to Stop Your Mind from Wandering During Meditation Psychology Today
Knowledge is Power: The Surprising Trigger You Might Not Be Aware Of Recovery Warriors
What the Wellness Industry Gets Wrong Proud2BMe
Monte Nido & Affiliates Regional Outreach Manager Tamie Gangloff continues to share her journey in advocacy work in part two of her series. Tamie writes about her first experience on Capitol Hill and how you can get involved in eating disorder awareness work as well!
My first time on the Hill was intimidating and I had no idea what to expect. I would like potential advocates <YOU> to know what a day is like. We have a briefing in the morning to discuss what we are asking for. Each time we advocate, our ‘asks’ are different so we are educated about our asks and have materials to give to our representatives at our meetings. You will not be expected to know all of the legislative details, directions around the capitol or where to eat lunch. You are not expected to have a degree in Political Science or know all of the statistics. You will have a team leader, as well as experienced advocates, to help you.
As a team leader, I help my team discover how they can share their experience as it relates to legislation. This is absolutely critical! It is the stories, tears and authenticity that reach our representatives. They meet with many constituents, every day, that have an important cause that requires support. We reach them with our powerful words. We have meetings scheduled with our representatives throughout the day – these meetings are typically with staffers. Staffers are on your representative’s staff that often specialize in health issues. Meetings are brief and to the point and many representatives do not show emotion. It is important to know that they are trained to not show emotion but it does not mean that you aren’t reaching them.
In Fall of 2017, one of our asks, with the Eating Disorders Coalition, was to have a congressionally recognized National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. This was met with a positive response from our representatives. We do not always see an immediate result but we do see results. Last week was National Eating Disorders Awareness Week and our Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed a proclamation declaring February 26 through March 4, 2018, as Eating Disorder Awareness Week in Pennsylvania. The United States Senate has passed Senate Resolution 419, officially designating Feb. 26 – March 4 National Eating Disorders Awareness Week for the first time. This is direct proof that our voices are heard!
When we connect with our representatives, we form relationships with them that have a ripple effect. Locally, Congressman Ryan Costello has attended and presented at the West Chester PA NEDA Walk that I am grateful to lead! We met him in DC during my first advocacy day and he continues to be an incredible support to us locally and in our nation’s capitol.
Our next Advocacy Day is coming up on April 24th! We hope to see you there! If you have any questions about it, I am happy to chat anytime. Together, we can make a difference.
Learn more about Advocacy Day HERE.
Monte Nido & Affiliates Regional Outreach Manager Tamie Gangloff shares her journey to becoming an eating disorder awareness advocate in this week’s blog post. Tamie discusses her personal inspiration for advocacy work and just how to get involved to use your voice as an advocate.
I hope to live in a world without eating disorders. I hope that our future generations have less stigma and better access to care. For me, advocacy is a way I can reach others and help on a much larger scale. Families, those that are struggling and those we have lost, cannot use their voices to ask for change. As a recovered woman and professional in the eating disorder field, I feel responsible to use my voice to advocate for change, to use my voice for those that cannot. I want others to know that being fully recovered is possible and that a life without an eating disorder is a reality. When I am on the Hill or at my state capitol in Harrisburg PA, I am thinking of friends and clients that I have lost, those that still struggle and the families and loved ones that walk this journey with them. I am humbled and honored to be joined by families and those that are in recovery. For those of you that do not feel that your voice is heard – what you have to say is so important and you deserve to be heard. I hope that today, you will take the risk to talk to someone about eating disorders whether it is to ask for help, raise awareness or share the message of hope.
Spring 2015 was my first time at the Eating Disorder Coalition’s Advocacy Day in Washington DC! For many years, the EDC has visited our nation’s Capitol twice per year to ask for legislation for issues including: eating disorder awareness, insurance coverage, as well as a nationally recognized eating disorders awareness week and the re-inclusion of eating disorder questions on youth risk surveys. Over this past year, I have joined a small but mighty team in Harrisburg with NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association). We have been asking for legislation to require schools to send information regarding eating disorder signs and symptoms home to families as well as an opt in for screenings in schools.
Being an advocate is an incredibly empowering experience. Being a part of a larger group brought together with a united purpose can change the world. For many of my team members, attending an advocacy day was the first time they shared their story. Last week, one of my group members was a brave high school senior that had never told her story. She was very nervous and was not sure if she would speak. We assured her that she was not obligated to speak and that, if she chose not to talk, her presence was more than enough. She felt moved to share and did so at all four of our meetings. This definitely had a great impact on our representatives and engaged them in a deeper conversation with us. Afterwards, she said that she felt empowered and that her level of shame had greatly decreased. Shame is something that many, of those with eating disorders, struggle with and I’m so thankful that she had this experience.