Tools & Templates Chapter Leader Resource Guide

Preparing Program Schedule

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September 19, 2018

Setting your Meeting and Program Schedule 

  1. The charter application includes a tentative program calendar for the first year. Use this to build a balanced program of speakers for ongoing education at your planned meeting times and locations. The board will have a member serving as the Education Chair. Encourage 3 or 4 additional members to help plan and promote these regular chapter meetings. Use AFP’s Chapter Management Resource Guide for program planning and execution resources. 
  2. Use a brief questionnaire to survey your members on their interests in chapter programming or ask them to provide suggestions after each chapter meeting. It is also recommended that you occasionally survey members to gauge their satisfaction level with the current facilities or to see if they would prefer that the location be rotated to different areas in order to best accommodate all members at some point, even if they are spread across a large geographic location.
  3. Seek out foundation executives, corporate leaders, corporate contribution officers, and development directors from larger institutions as luncheon program speakers. Encourage members to bring guests to chapter programs and luncheon meetings. 
  4. Before each chapter meeting, allow a half-hour fellowship period for people to get acquainted. Always use name tags. We recommend that chapter members be identified in some manner on their badges, or by using ribbons attached to badges to distinguish them from non-member guests.  Also, your chapter may wish to identify new members in a similar manner to ensure the member is properly welcomed at the event.  
  5. You may want to use the same meeting place so that members are accustomed to and comfortable with the location.  Criteria for selection of a permanent site include:
    1. accessibility
    2. reasonable food cost
    3. quality of food service
    4. availability of adequate meeting space
    5. ability to meet technology needs
    6. convenient and cost-free parking

Getting the Word Out 

  1. Appoint a member or committee to write and edit an e- newsletter or prepare an e-blast every month, with announcements of upcoming meetings and information on job opportunities.
  2. At the outset, the most important chapter committee will be the Membership Committee which is responsible for maintaining a current membership list (using AFP online report resources), recruiting new members and welcoming the current members. Chapters must maintain a minimum of 20 Professional category members at all times in order to retain their charter.
  3. Participate in the Chapter Website program which is a free web platform for all chapters to use
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