Who We Are
TX Votes is a student organization, sponsored by the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic life, that invites students campus wide to increase electoral participation and create more voters and better citizens. Each election cycle, we organize and coordinate Get Out the Vote activities including registration booths, deputization sessions, and campus competitions. TX Votes also convenes the Civic Engagement Alliance, which is a non-partisan coalition of over 50 student organizations. CEA members bring back what they learn from the CEA to their own organizations to talk about what civic engagement looks like for their own communities. The CEA also coordinates large campus events that promote voter engagement, like annual Last Night to Register to Vote celebrations.
What We’re Fundraising For
The money we raise allows us to keep up the amazing work we achieved in 2020. We presented in 189 classrooms, giving them nonpartisan information about voting and voter registration. We also partnered with 22 other organizations to give presentations and make sure their participants were prepared to vote. In order to keep doing our work on a wide scale, we rely on gifts from supporters like you.
This year, our fundraising goal is $5,000. Pre-COVID, we hosted large events like VoteFest and the Election Night Watch Party. These events typically cost thousands of dollars, and TX Votes normally pays at least $1000 out of pocket. We also spend money on direct voter registration, including printing voter registration materials.
TX Votes represents the University of Texas at several national civic engagement events, including at the Harvard Institute of Politics. Sending a student to this event or the CLDE conference runs upwards of $750.
Retaining members is always a challenge for student organizations. During typical semesters, TX Votes provides pizza for members at its meetings, which costs $150 per meeting. For our fall and spring virtual semesters, we have mailed items to students for participating in online challenges related to getting out the vote, provided pizza to students remotely for textbanking fellow UT students to vote, and incentivized participation in other events.
While this year has not been typical, we are hopeful that things could potentially return to normal for future semesters after Spring 2021. Donating to TX Votes will help us to meet the costs we expect to incur in a virtual or in person semester.