Sunday, January 13, 2019

Ten Things You Can do to Improve your Self Advocacy Group

Ten Things You Can do to Improve your Self Advocacy Group

Different groups do different things. This isn’t a be all, end all list and not every suggestion will work for every group. Try at least one or two of these however and we think you might see some positive change.

1. Have More Social Opportunities.

Getting your work done is great but don’t discount the importance of letting your hair down and hanging out with people that you share common interests with in a social setting. A good party can also be a great way to draw in new members.

2. Do Volunteer Work / Community Outreach

Everyone has causes and organizations dear to their heart. Become an active part of your community by supporting these causes as a group with your time and talents. Hold a fundraiser for your favorite local charity or service organization. It feels great and will increase the networking opportunities for your group to get its goals accomplished. Represent your SA group and your works at outside events. Stretch your reach!

3. Have more actual benefits for your members

Raffle off Tickets for local events, find local businesses that may be willing to provide a small discount to your membership. Use your imagination to find subtle and not so subtle ways to thank the members of your group for their time and support.

4. Take Advantage of Social Media

It seems that almost everyone uses some kind of social media to communicate and inform, and in most cases it’s FREE. Whether it’s fun pictures of your last event on Instagram, calendar events, pics, videos and communication via Facebook or short reminders on Twitter, there are TONS of ways to get your word out.

5. BUT Have an actual website
Social media is great but it’s also temporary. An organization needs its own home on the web for a permanent home and platform to keep forever! Fortunately a google account for your group gives you the opportunity to create a blog website, organize and communicate with your contacts, have an email, store important group documents, post group videos on You Tube and tons of other tools. This is also FREE and one login gets you into ALL of it.

6. Simple promotional and contact materials
We can’t tell you how many times we’ve tried to get contact information for a particular group and were unable to. Vistaprint is a great way to print up an order of business cards inexpensively. The groups name, email, contact name and phone number, when it meets, web and social media links, all the important information right there. And make sure they are always available to your membership at every meeting in case someone wants to have a couple in their wallet or purse to help spread the word. Even a flyer will do the trick, just make sure you have them.

7. Have a Focus, even if it’s no focus
Some SA groups have lofty goals and some groups simply support their members in any and all aspects of their lives. Some are tied in with larger organizations and some are social groups. It’s all GREAT. But it’s in your best interest to talk about it decide what you want that focus to be for no other reason than to be able to explain it to someone else when you are inevitably asked what YOUR group is all about. Having a focus, even if it’s no focus will also help guide you in running and growing your group.

8. Hats / Shirts / Hoodies – Membership/Inclusion
This one will cost a little bit of money but when we see a group of people volunteering, at an event or just out and about and they’re all sharing a common shirt, hat, hoodie it makes us take notice. Most people are proud of being part of something bigger than themselves, give them the opportunity to show it!

9. Use the talents of your membership
Everyone has talents, some people are comfortable speaking to others and some aren’t. Some people are very talented on computers and social media. Some people have interesting hobbies that others might want to learn about. Take the time to find out what each member is good at and don’t be afraid to ask them to use some of their talents for the betterment of the group. When someone is valued it makes them happy and will have the added benefit of decreasing the workload for all.

10. Talk it up! Spread the Word!
You wouldn’t be in the group if you didn’t support it! Talk it Up! Tell people, invite your peers to meetings, spread the word about all the good things your SA group is doing, grab a couple of those business cards and keep them in your wallet to give to others. Be Proud! You’re making a difference!


We’d love to list your group, post your events and share your news and successes on We’d love to interview you for a podcast or have some of your members on the SAinAction Television show. It’s what we do!!! Use Us. or

We can’t help you if you don’t let us know what you’re doing…

Friday, December 28, 2018

SAinAction TV: Four Questions at The ADA Walk

This past Summer we joined over 100 advocates, families and supporters in walking over three miles from the Southgate Plaza to the DDSO on East West Road to illustrate the difficulties faced by those who attempt to access these offices without public transportation, as NFTA does not go there. We asked some of the supporters a few questions... Here are their answers...

Friday, September 28, 2018

Gaelynn Lea SAinAction On the Road Interview

Welcome to our first episode of SAinAction On the Road. Join host Alex Insight as he has a great conversation with artist Gaelynn Lea before her show at The Niagara Falls Convention Center.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

October is Disability History Month!

Please mark your calendars for these important events:

VOICE Accessibility Task Force Monthly Meeting October 10, 2018 695 Elmwood Ave Buffalo - this meeting is for people who are interested in increasing accessibility for people with disabilities in Buffalo

"Focus on the Future, Remember the Past" October 11th, 2018 10am -1pm at McKinley Mall. Check out cool tools in tech for making life better. See demonstrations by people with disabilities of how they use everyday technology to communicate, work, live, and game!

DDAWNY Candidates Hour October 12th, 2018 10am -11am at Southeast Works 181 Lincoln St, Depew. Meet the political candidates who are running for election this November.

No Tap Bowling Tournament October 13th 2018 1pm and 3:30pm at 11249 Maple Ridge Rd Medina, NY. Win money bowling! Fundraiser for the All Stars SA group. Call (585) 318-4474 for more info

Exceptional Entrepreneurs Expo October 13th, 2018 10am -3pm at the Museum of disAbility History 3826 Main Street, Buffalo, NY. Free event with lots of people who own their own business and ideas for fun things to do with your life!

An Hour with Senator Ortt/ Voter Education and Access October 18th, 2018 10am -1pm at the Museum of disAbility History 3826 Main Street, Buffalo, NY. 10-11am Listening Forum with Senator Ortt. 11-12:30pm Try out the Accessible Voting machines 12:30 Suitcase History project presentation by Dave Mack-Hardiman. Free. Pizza fundraiser on site $5 for 2 slices and a drink

Leadership Day October 27th, 2018 12pm-4pm at North Buffalo Community Center 203 Sanders Rd Buffalo. Self advocates and community advocates coming together to learn and teach about issues important to us. A must attend for people who are/ want to be leaders. Poets and artists will present as well. 

Friday, July 27, 2018

On the Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, we walked and rolled to bring awareness to issues of access. Congradulations to everyone to made the grueling 2 and a half mile walk yesterday! Kaylin Corbran sums things up, while showing her fierce determination:

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Fwd: Self Advocacy Night at the Texas Roadhouse

Monday, June 4th, 2018 4pm - 10pm

Texas Roadhouse Fundraiser

Support Self Advocates and have a great meal, fun, & games at Texas Roadhouse locations across WNY!

When you dine at Texas Roadhouse on June 4th, 2018 they will donate 10% of your check to SANYS:

  • Visit the restaurant or order take out and bring the attached flyer for your location with you to give to the server.
  • At the Texas Roadhouse locations in Cheektowaga, Tonawanda, Rochester, and Elmira
  • Monday June 4th, 2018 4pm-10pm

Bring your recreation group, friends, and family- many locations have fun activities for kids- and join friends from self advocacy! Don't forget to download and print out the flyer for your location and give it to your server to support the fundraiser.

Click on the location you would like to attend to download the flyer:
Cheektowaga Texas Roadhouse Flyer
Tonawanda Texas Roadhouse Flyer
Rochester Texas Roadhouse Flyer
Elmira Texas Roadhouse Flyer

With thanks and appreciation from the Western Regional Self Advocacy Conference Fundraising Committee and the SANYS Western region board members. Hope to see you there!

Copyright © 2018 Self-Advocacy Association of NYS, All rights reserved. 
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Self-Advocacy Association of NYS
1200 East and West Rd
West Seneca, NY  14224

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