Voter Registration Tool Kit for Non-Profit Organizations and Social
Registering voters is the first step to helping people advocate for
themselves. Elected officials owe their jobs to the people who elect
them. Help make sure that you and the people you serve are voters.
Whether your organization works on affordable housing, substance
abuse and mental illness, domestic violence, community development, etc.
– you have the opportunity to make sure that the individuals who walk
through your doors are registered to vote.
We at the CT Health Policy Project are registering the 400 consumer
members of the Consumer Health Action Network. We have compiled the
following information and materials to help other non-profit and social
service agencies register their clients to vote – a tip sheet to help
clients fill out their voter registration cards, answers to a list of
common excuses for not voting, and letters to clients explaining the
importance of registering to vote. All materials are in English and
The following is an outline of the process that has worked for us at
the CT Health Policy Project. Our network is geographically dispersed,
and we generally communicate with our network members by snail mail.
Please feel free to add/correct/contribute to these materials and adapt
them to suit your client network. Let us know your adaptations so that
we can pass them along to others.
Ask yourself the following question to plan out your voter
registration drive – Do you have a list of the clients you serve,
including their names and addresses?
If not, take some time (fifteen minutes in your regular staff meeting
is plenty) to explain the voter registration process to your staff so
that everyone is on board and knows how to fill out the voter
- Have voter registration cards (in English and
Spanish) on hand for people who come to your office or community center.
Call the Secretary of State's Elections Administration Division
(860-509-6100) to request packets of registration cards – they will send
you as many as you need.
- Ask everyone who walks through your doors
whether they are registered to vote
- Bring registration cards to onsite
- Help clients fill out the registration cards
- Mail it in for
If your organization does have a list of the clients you serve,
follow these three steps to help everyone in your member network
register to vote:
Step One – Find out who in your client network is and is not already
registered to vote.
- Contact the Registrar of Voters in each of the
towns where you have clients. Contact info for the Registrars in Connecticut
can be found on the
Secretary of State's Web Site.
a list of your clients, including clients' dates of birth (if you have
them) and addresses to the Registrar’s office.
- The Registrar will get
back to you with information about who is and is not registered in your
Step two – Create candidate cards for each of your clients.
- To find
out who the candidates running are in each of your clients' districts,
go to http://www.congress.org/congressorg/e4/?
- Search by address,
city, and state for each of your clients to get the districts for all
offices in this election.
- See attached Candidate Contacts
document for candidates' local phone numbers, last updated August 2. You
can also use the Campaign Finance Information System on the Secretary of
State's website for updated candidate contact info –
Click on Public and then Candidate. For each candidate, choose
Registration Information and look for Candidate Phone. Or go to
for candidate contact info. Select the town, click on More Information,
and look for Home Phone.
- Create candidate cards including candidates'
names, political parties, and local phone numbers (or local address if
phone number is not available) for each client including all their
candidates from President to State Representative.
Step three – Send voter registration packets to clients.
voter registration cards (English and Spanish) for each client who is
not yet registered to vote. You may choose to include voter registration
cards for all clients, whether or not they are registered, and encourage
those who are registered to help their neighbors and friends register to
- Fill in the Registrar of Voters address on the voter
registration cards you send to clients (either by hand or using printed
labels). Use the address of the Registrar in the town where they live,
not where they work.
- Include a tip sheet to help clients fill out the voter
registration cards. See our tip sheet in
- Include a letter explaining why voting matters (see ours below)
and answers to a list of common excuses for not registering to vote
in English and
- Include candidate cards specific to each
client’s voting district (see a sample of our
Contact us if you would like your clients added to our Consumer
Health Action Network newsletter list at
calling toll-free in CT 1-888-873-4585.
Candidate contact file – Excel file of contact information for all CT
candidates running for US Congress, US Senate, State Senate and State
House of Representatives.
Letter to Non-registered Voters in English
Letter to Non-registered Voters in Spanish
Letter to Registered Voters in English
Letter to Registered Voters in Spanish
Common Excuses for Not Registering and Answers in English
Common Excuses for Not Registering and Answers in Spanish
Sample Candidate Cards
Registering to Vote Tip Sheet
Inscribiendose para votar
Holding a Voter Registration Drive
How Nonprofits Can (and Can't) Participate in Election Activities,
from the National Council of Nonprofit Associations