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Hiking with Congressman Schiff

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Brittany Miles (CARE field organizer), Congressman Adam Schiff and me.

Last night, Brittany Miles from CARE and I attended a town hall meeting.  Well, it wasn't your typical town hall meeting like the type that happens in a high school gymnasium or a church fellowship hall.  This meeting took place on a mountain.  Our local congressman organized a hike with his constituents in Burbank, CA.  It was a beautiful way to experience nature and meet up with our representative.

Despite running late AND getting lost, we made it up the mountain in record time.  We felt like we were on a scavenger hunt.  Mission: Find the Congressman.  Once we found our way to the group of hikers, it was amazing to see the diversity of constituents who turned out for the hike.  There was a small group of girl scouts who asked GREAT questions like, "How did you decide to run for Congress?"  "What did you do before you were elected?"  They were super cute!  Other constituents used the opportunity to speak with Adam Schiff about their concerns - human rights abuses in China and preserving our open space. 

Along the trail, we met up with Rep. Schiff's executive assistant Jessica Howard.  We asked her about the purpose of the hike.  She said the Congressman was a lead supporter of the Rim of the Valley Corridor Study Act, which the president signed into law in May.  The study could result in the preservation of 500,000 acres of land in the mountain areas of Southern California.

Rep. Schiff asked how things are going at Bread for the World and we had a few moments to speak with him about our work.  The congressman serves on the House Appropriations Committee and helps make funding decisions about accounts that fight global poverty.  In the past we've urged him to support increases in poverty focused development assistance, which includes: the Millennium Challenge Account, Development Assistance, the Peace Corps and other accounts to strengthen public health, nutrition and agriculture in the developing world.  The hike was a pretty cool way to connect with the congressman, talk about our concerns and meet up with his staff.

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