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Sample Letter to Sec. Clinton

The Honorable Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
U.S.Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20520

Dear Secretary Clinton,

Paragraph 1: Introduction

Introduce yourself by stating your name and hometown. Include a brief, 1-sentence summary of why you are writing the letter.

Paragraph 2: Child Marriage – Making the case

In this paragraph, you should be addressing why child marriage matters to you. Provide 2-3 sentences about why you think child marriage is an important issue to address and why you are passionate about helping adolescent girls around the world. Be sure to include some facts or a story of a girl that you find shocking. For example, 1 in 7 girls in developing countries will be married before the age of 15. For more facts and information on child marriage, visit http://www.icrw.org/child-marriage-facts-and-figures

Paragraph 3: Making the “ask”

In this paragraph, you should address how Sec. Clinton can help. Ask for increased political and financial commitments so that we can work to end child marriage. The time to tackle this issue is now! You can also mention that addressing child marriage will help achieve other developmental goals because it is linked with so many other global issues (e.g. education, poverty, health, safety). The Senate demonstrated a bipartisan commitment to the issue by passing the Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act; now we need to see our government take action. Make sure you say “please”!

Paragraph 4: Personal touch

Here is where you can really be creative! Why as a U.S. citizen is ending child marriage important to you? How did you react when you heard about child marriage? How did you feel when the Senate passed the International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act? Is there a particular story you’ve heard about a girl being married at a young age that has affected you? Is there an article or book you read on child marriage that shocked you? Make this paragraph unique to why you care about this issue.

Paragraph 5: Conclusion and thank you

Wrap up your letter by reiterating your “ask” (be sure to include “please”) and briefly stating the importance of addressing the issue of child marriage. Be sure to thank Sec. Clinton for her time and her leadership on empowering girls and women around the world.

Sincerely,
[Signature]
[Your First & Last Name]
[Address]
[Phone Number]