In 2016, we announced more than $8 million in new funding to support these organizations.
A one-year $225,000 grant to increase nonpartisan voter and civic engagement opportunities in the context of new district elections in Jurupa Valley.
A two-year $150,000 grant to expand voter participation among immigrant young adults through nonpartisan efforts.
A two-year $450,000 grant for general operating support.
A one-year $150,000 grant to expand voter participation among young adults through nonpartisan efforts at colleges and universities.
In 2014, the Foundation launched the Voter Outreach and Technology (VOTE) Initiative, to support organizations experimenting with technology to improve voter outreach and increase voter participation.
VOTE initiative organizations are testing new voter-targeting methods, social media approaches, door-to-door outreach enhanced by the use of technology, and other innovative techniques.
Ten selected organizations conducted nonpartisan voter outreach prior to the June and November 2014 elections. They worked with an academic research team led by Lisa García Bedolla of UC Berkeley, Marisa Abrajano of UC San Diego and Jane Junn of the University of Southern California. The initiative also contracted directly with Political Data Inc., the state’s leading voter file data provider, to provide technical assistance to the cohort.
As you will see from the report, Testing New Technologies in Mobilizing Voters of Color, we learned a great deal about how organizations might can use technology to better connect with their community and find new ways to engage with voters. We also learned that this work demands new types of partnerships between researchers, funders, and community organizations to increase voter and civic engagement, particularly among low-income communities of color.
Asian Americans Advancing Justice–Los Angeles (Advancing Justice-LA), in partnership with the Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Alliance (OCAPICA): Advancing Justice-LA and OCAPICA will contact Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander voters across Los Angeles and Orange counties. The organizations will test the impact of adding email outreach along with phone banking in the potential voter’s language preference. The emails will include varying multi-media and culturally relevant content. The organizations also will explore varying approaches to reach permanent vote-by-mail voters.
Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA): CHIRLA will engage infrequent voters in immigrant and Latino communities of Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties, along with parts of the San Joaquin Valley. CHIRLA will test the impact of using GOTV text message contacts just prior to Election Day in conjunction with more traditional phone banking and door-to-door outreach strategies.
Community Coalition for Substance Abuse Prevention & Treatment (Community Coalition): Community Coalition will reach out to infrequent voters in South Los Angeles by phone, with a focus on African American and Latino residents. The organization also plans to assess the impact that participating in a tele-townhall has on turnout among voters in South Los Angeles.
Mi Familia Vota Education Fund: Mi Familia Vota plans to contact infrequent Latino voters in Fresno, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Stanislaus counties. They will test the impact of an Election Day GOTV text message on voters and the effect Facebook ads have on Latino voter turnout across California.
National Association of Latino Elected Officials Educational Fund (NALEO): NALEO will engage infrequent Latino voters in Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties, along with parts of the San Joaquin Valley. By creating voter contact lists through new voter propensity modeling methodologies, the organization will test their impact among those least likely to participate in elections. NALEO will also test the effect of targeting higher-propensity voters within the same household in order to increase their campaign’s effectiveness.
Oakland Rising: Oakland Rising plans to contact new and infrequent voters in low income, ethnic, and immigrant communities in Oakland. They will test the impact of integrating text messaging and email contacts with traditional phone banking and door-to-door outreach strategies. They also will analyze the varying impact of these approaches among voters of different demographic backgrounds.
Rock the Vote, in partnership with CalPIRG: Rock the Vote and CalPIRG will mobilize young voters between the ages of 18–29 years old statewide. Rock the Vote will explore whether Facebook ads increase voter turnout among youth. CalPIRG will test the effect of friend-to-friend and peer-to-peer outreach strategies using social media, texting, and email.
Strategic Concepts in Organizing Policy & Education (SCOPE): SCOPE plans to engage new and infrequent voters in South Los Angeles with a specific focus on young people, African Americans, and Latinos. SCOPE’s experiment will explore the extent to which a GOTV text message enhances the impact of traditional forms of voter outreach, including door-to-door outreach and phone banking.