Braving Michigan weather (and nerves) to advocate with Rep. Amash

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It was sprinkling outside when I made my way up out of the parking garage next to the federal building to meet with Jordan Bush, the District Representative of Rep. Justin Amash in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

As I’m shaking Mr. Bush’s hand, all I could think about was the fact that here I was, representing ONE, fighting for the end of extreme poverty and preventable diseases looking like a wet dog. Fantastic. Graciously he didn’t seem to notice. Comfortably settled into the conference room at the back of the office, our meeting began. I thanked Mr. Bush on behalf of ONE for his willingness to see me that day.

We had an incredibly productive dialogue about PEPFAR and the Global Fund. He had intelligent and well-informed questions and was happy to let me share what I know about our efforts to end extreme poverty and preventable diseases. We talked at length about the budget and Rep. Amash’s desire to avoid cutting funding for lifesaving programs.

Mr. Bush asked for additional information concerning ONE and our involvement in Grand Rapids. He seemed enthused at the prospect of our Food Day Event on Oct 16 and said either he or Rep. Amash will attend.

Before leaving the office we took a quick snap shot. And as I braved the then pouring rain, I felt a sense of accomplishment on behalf of ONE. Rep. Amash and his Grand Rapids office now know who we are and what we are working towards. I hope this leads to a long and fruitful relationship between us. If nothing else I proved to myself that looking like a wet dog doesn’t hinder my ability to get my talking points across. Many thanks to Rep. Justin Amash’s Grand Rapids office for meeting with me this past week.

-Rhiannon Wootres, Congressional District Leader, Grand Rapids, Mich.