Advocacy Resources

Nonprofit Advocacy & Civic Engagement Research
Explore Independent Sector's landmark research on the declining state of nonprofit influence through advocacy and civic engagement.

Advocacy Dos and Don'ts
Download our list of best practices when reaching out to policymakers.

Who Represents Me?
Find your current representatives in the Texas Legislature and U.S. Congress by address or county.

Texas Legislature Online
Look up bills, legislators, committees, calendars, and information on the legislative process.

State Government Resources
Find public records, reports, data, press releases, updates, and other important information from the Texas executive, legislative, and judicial branches.

Live Broadcasts: Texas House of Representatives
Watch live streaming broadcasts and access archived recordings of Texas House of Representatives meetings.

Live Broadcasts: Texas Senate
Watch live streaming broadcasts and access archived recordings of Texas Senate meetings.

Texas Tribune
Find statewide news coverage of Texas politics and legislative activity.

Advocacy FAQs

Every nonprofit can and should get involved in advocacy to help advance its mission. Representatives of nonprofit organizations can educate and inform decision-makers, including policymakers with the expertise, experience, and real-life stories necessary to find solutions to complex community problems. Additionally, advocacy shapes the public debate about issues that affect nonprofits. It’s the number one way nonprofits can focus attention on the issues they care about and bring about real change for the people and causes they serve.

Yes, nonprofits are permitted to move beyond advocacy (e.g. educate and inform policymakers and the public) and lobby. Lobbying is the practice of influencing policymakers or their staff by expressing a position on a specific piece of legislation (known as direct lobbying) as well as mobilizing advocates to contact their legislators about that legislation (known as grassroots lobbying).

Nonprofits play an important role in the local, state and national economies. Businesses and governments have recognized that mission-driven nonprofit organizations offer something unique - leverage of social, financial and human capital - that is necessary to advance the common good and provide essential services to support a thriving community.