Community events, like a legislative breakfast or community forum, allow you to educate the community, local decision makers, and legislators about our key messages and the progress we've made to reduce tobacco's burden. Events are successful when they:
- Educate the community and legislators on our key messages and the progress we've made to reduce tobacco's burden.
- Keep your alliance members engaged.
- Identify new supporters for your coalition/network.
Types of Community Events
This section contains information on how to choose the right event for your coalition. Legislative Breakfasts, Women of Influence events, Community/Candidate Forums, and other events are all options when it comes to picking the best event for your goal. You can get further information from the Community Event Types Overview.
Thinking of a Community Forum?
These tools can help:
- Healthy Community Forums is a step-by-step planning guide.
- Healthy Choices, Healthy Communities - Forum Presentation is a sample event presentation.
Tips for Holding an Event
- The event should be branded as an alliance event and held in a geographically strategic location.
- Should partner with one to two related community groups as long as tobacco control is a major part of the agenda.
- Agenda should highlight coalition work and contain educational content about program sustainability, health equity, and/or other tobacco products.
- Ensure adequate attendance with promotion of your event. More than 30 attendees is ideal.
- The room should fit the size of your projected attendance and not appear too large.
- Engage coalition members in planning and execution. Assign meaningful roles to volunteers, including calling invitees to confirm attendance, staffing the sign up tables, speaking, moderating, presenting, set-up/tear down, providing food, and writing thank you notes.
During the Event
- Have someone welcome and greet all attendees.
- Assign someone to greet and assist community/policy leaders.
- Assign someone to greet and assist local media.
- Collect home addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses for your database.
- Feature action stations where volunteers can sign up for Joint Finance Committee roles, earned media, presentations, etc.
After the Event
- Send thank you notes to community/policy leaders who attended.
- Let your contract administrator know how it went.
- Consider using the Event Debrief Tool as a way to document and evaluate your event.