Maximize the local impact of major sporting events

For our second welcome in 2018, we helped community and sports clubs open their facilities along the course and invite the community.

This allowed us to create many “mini fan zones” to watch the race on TV and live, and also helped organizations reach new audiences.

Many of them still hold morning coffees to bring seniors together in their community following the initial event.

Key things to consider

However, engagement does not happen overnight and you will need to plan and prepare well in advance of the event to maximize impact.

Try to make this as transparent as possible and remove what we call “mud”.

Mud is anything that makes it difficult to get into your club or activities, or is a potential barrier to people’s participation.

This can be as simple as outdated contact numbers on your website or promotional material using highly technical language that is difficult to understand.

Organizations will also need to be prepared for the expected influx of new members, which will require you to plan months in advance.

Many of these big events are planned years in advance, so get involved in the discussions early because you’ll have to replicate them.

Think about:

  • train and develop volunteers ahead of the event
  • how you organize the initiation sessions – consider giving free tasters
  • have a welcoming face to meet and welcome new participants and members.

The hardest step for someone coming to an activity for the first time is the first step, and you need to make it as easy as possible.

As council officers, we need to think about our role in this process, plan alongside our clubs and community groups, and where possible fund the training of volunteers and free up other resources to help grassroots organizations.

For example, in Doncaster, we have developed a very simple micro-grants program which has enabled us to support 33 groups (11,000 people), many of whom were previously unengaged, and help them engage in TDY and UCI Road World Championships.

To help clubs, professionals and event organisers, Get Doncaster Moving is about to launch the GAMEPLAN book, which brings together all our learnings into one easy to use guide.

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