Nonprofits like the National Rifle Association and the Sierra Club are powerful voices in Washington, D.C., and state capitols. But you may be unfamiliar with the nonprofit advocacy done by community - based organizations. As you've seen, however, local groups can make a difference through a wide range of actions. And with some forethought and strategic planning, advocacy can allow your organization to better the lives of your constituents without doing any harm to yo u r funding or legal status. We hope that this manual has been persuasive about the opportunities that advocacy offers. Our goal was to show that you don't have to be a national organization or a lobbying powerhouse to make a difference. We also wanted to help your group plan on how and when to speak up for what you think needs to change. If you're ready to begin, we recommend you take some time to look at the resources listed on the next page. Not only will you get some great tips on how to do the best job possible, these websites and publications give examples of nonprofits doing advocacy in communities across the country.