Register your Buddy Walk® online at www.buddywalk.org. Once your Walk registration is received (the date and location need to be determined at this point), you will be emailed a customized license agreement for your Walk. Your Walk registration will be processed when NDSS receives your signed license agreement.
Contact your committee and recruit new members. Designate co-captains for each area of responsibility: publicity, registration, t-shirts, sponsorship, food, site approvals/permits, etc.
Select a Walk site and date and contact site for permit information
Contact previous sponsors to renew support and solicit new sponsors
Develop and print your Buddy Walk® brochure and other promotional materials. This should include registration form, pledge form, location of all activities, fundraising incentives, etc.
Visit businesses, schools, hospitals, etc. to encourage participation
Solicit/secure food and beverage, entertainment and other donations, including local elementary/middle/high school band, dance groups, cartoonists, face painters, jugglers, clowns, etc.
Follow-up with all potential sponsors: re-send materials from two months prior, if necessary
Send brochures and open phone/email line for questions about event to local parent group mailing lists, schools, houses of worship, social service agencies, community clubs, etc.
Invite VIPs and local media to participate in event
List Walk in newspaper event calendars, get mayoral proclamation
Solicit/secure volunteer assistance for day-of-duties from Best Buddies, fraternities and sororities, high school and college athletic teams, community and church groups, local parent groups, child-oriented businesses, etc.
Order shirts, hats, sweatshirts and other items for sale or distribution
Book photographer and create photo shot list
Order signs, pennants, banners and other custom signage, and make sure all sponsors receive exposure as promised
Order port-a-johns and other event rentals such as tents, tables, chairs, etc.
Continue follow-up with Buddy Walk® teams until day of event (and after event)
Send out thank you letters and have a post-Walk evaluation meeting, at which you should select a date for next year’s Walk, decide if your venue serves your needs or if you will need to find a new location, confirm future leadership (event co-chairs) and set a date for the first meeting for the following year (approx. 6 months later).
Meet a DS-AMBASSADOR®
“We had a blast connecting with so many other families and advocates. Top notch! We can’t wait for the Buddy Walk on Washington next year!”