Planning Community Activities
Going to the Community for Outreach Activities
Updated: 6.1.06 Printable version
Ideas for Utilizing Existing Events and Venues
The following is an overview of activities coalitions conducted during previous Covering Kids & Families Back-to-School Campaigns. Please remember, when parents or guardians inquire about health care coverage for kids, it can also be a good opportunity to discuss available coverage for adults.
Existing Community Events
Investigate events that are scheduled and determine if health care coverage enrollment and outreach would enhance them. After you've established your participation in an event, consider inviting an elected official to attend and/or speak to reinforce their awareness of how valuable these programs are to their constituents.
Some possible community events to consider as a venue for outreach include:
School Functions. Schools provide rich opportunities for outreach. An extensive list of tips and ideas on school-based outreach can be found in the related documents on this page.
The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU). The AAU is the largest nonprofit volunteer sports organization in the United States. The 57 AAU state associations nationwide coordinate more than 34 sports programs, 250 national championships and more than 10,000 local events every year. For more information, please visit www.aausports.org.
Boys & Girls Clubs National Kids Day. Each August, Boys & Girls Clubs across America promote meaningful involvement with children. Contact your local club to see if it is hosting an event. For more information, please visit www.bgca.org.
Community Health Centers. Community Health Centers Week is typically in early August. Many community, migrant and rural health centers commemorate the important role they play in the health care delivery system by hosting health fairs or other activities. Contact your local health center to learn if it is planning any activities. Information can be found at www.nachc.com.
Local Health Departments. Some local health departments may be offering immunization clinics before school starts.
Labor Unions. There is a reason it's called "Labor Day." Contact local unions to see if they are planning Labor Day festivities.
YMCA and YWCA. Both groups are known for their programs for children and teens. Ask the director if there are special events or days that families are likely to be at the Y.
Sporting Events. See if your local major or minor league soccer, baseball or football team will sign on and permit enrollment and outreach activities at the game site. (See Sports Community Outreach tips in this section.)
Department of Parks and Recreation. Check in with your local department of parks and recreation or other agencies that issue event permits to learn about upcoming events.
Summer and Fall Events. In every region of the country, a wide variety of family-friendly events provide outreach opportunities, including:
- County fairs/4H exhibits or activities
- Library days
- Farm shows
- Zoo parties
- Ethnic festivals
- Block parties
- Pool parties
- Summer camp celebrations
- Police and fire department open houses
- Radio or television station-sponsored festivals
- Religious gatherings or celebrations
Existing Health Fairs. Groups in your community may already have a health or immunization fair planned. Check local hospitals, clinics and managed care organizations.
Many families are running errands and buying new clothes, uniforms or school supplies during the back-to-school period. Some communities even promote back-to-school shopping with tax-free shopping days. Talk with local retailers or your chamber of commerce about how to set up an enrollment and outreach station inside or outside stores.
Some possible sites to consider as a venue for outreach include:
Discount stores (e.g., Kmart, Target, etc.)
Office supply stores
Optical stores (or large discount stores that offer vision screening)
School uniform stores
Sports uniforms and equipment stores