“We need Congress to Think Babies- for stronger families, vibrant communities, and a prosperous country,” the Strolling Thunder website states. Last week, Edison Red Nest III and his fiancé Courtney Barber took their family to the United States Capitol in Washington D.C. for the Strolling Thunder rally.
The event took place on May 8 and was a rally focusing on change for the younger generations. “We went to visit our representatives for Nebraska. We met with them throughout the day in offices on Capitol Hill,” Red Nest said, “We talked to them about early childhood education, increasing funding for health issues, and increasing funding for babies so they can get a good start in life.”
Stacey Finkel stated in a news release, “Parents will deliver that message directly when they take Capitol Hill to visit with their senators and representatives. The goal of the event and meetings is to emphasize why making young children’s potential a national priority benefits the country and impacts everything from economic development to military readiness.”
Strolling Thunder is an event put on for infants, children, and families from all 50 states and the District of Columbia to make babies and children the “priority.” The three main goals of the event to “Think Babies and Act” is to “create a national paid family leave program, increase access to quality, affordable child care, and increase investments in Early Head Start.”
Shawna Rischling, teacher at Kiddie Kampus asked the Red Nest family to apply to be representatives and they were chosen to attend the event. In total, all who went to Washington D.C. were: Edison Red Nest III, Courtney Barber, Katrina Ensign, Angelita Corbine, and Krymson Red Nest. Red Nest added that as soon as they arrived (the family left on Sunday), they checked into their hotel and registered. The Red Nest family had a few meetings that they were going to discuss with the Senators and that was a part of the day where people from all 50 states gathered together and decorated their strollers so when the rally happened on Tuesday, the strollers and children would be dressed up.
Red Nest described it as a gathering held at the South Lawn on Capitol Hill, Red Nest said that it was expected to be about 200 people gathered in total.
Red Nest said that the Strolling Thunder event was powerful in own its way and felt it was a success. “Normally there are not a lot of babies in strollers with rattles going around the Senators office,” he laughed, “That was noticeable! In our meetings, the representatives seemed interested in what we had to say.”
Before flying back on Wednesday, the family was able to tour the local sights. “The older children knew what we were doing but the little ones only know that they got to see a really big guy in a house,” Red Nest laughed, referring to the Lincoln Memorial.
Red Nest explained the event as being “more focused on the little ones.” Red Nest ended by thanking Shawna Rischling and the other teachers at Kiddie Kampus for the honor of representing Nebraska at Strolling Thunder.