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APN Promotion: Planning Your Workshop

Online Promotion Guide: Active Parenting of Teens

Planning Your Workshop

 This section includes planning tips to help you get your workshop organized so that your Active Parenting of Teens program will be a success.

The Benefits of Partnering with a Sponsoring Organization

If you decide to work with a sponsoring organization, you must carefully present the reasons why everyone benefits from parent education. Personally meet with the people within the organization whose influence and support can make your parenting education classes happen. You will need to receive the approval of the head of the organization, and you must take the time to keep the organization involved and informed from the beginning until the last class.

As time-consuming as this may be, there are real benefits to having a sponsoring organization. In addition to providing credibility within the community, a sponsoring organization (i.e. school, hospital, counseling center, church/synagogue) usually provides a free meeting room, publicity, and equipment. It may also cover leader fees, and may be able to offer the course and materials to low-income parents free of charge. Sometimes it will have multiple locations, allowing you to draw from a large area without increased promotion costs.

Form a Planning Committee

It is difficult for one person working alone to plan and promote a successful parenting program. By forming a committee of at least three people, you will have the support and “power”to do an effective job of organizing and selling the workshop. At the first meeting present your plan of action, ask for feedback and ideas, and discuss the involvement and responsibilities of each committee member. Set specific dates for completing assignments (i.e. location/room arrangements, publicity, registration, babysitting) and then allow each person to have ownership of their part of the project. Make a followup call to confirm that arrangements are proceeding as planned.

Getting Others on Board

At the beginning, determine your objectives, identify your target audience, and review the program's benefits. If working with a sponsoring organization, make sure their representative(s) on the committee understands how the Active Parenting of Teens program can help the organization fulfill its mission: Parenting education helps build stronger families and enhances the organization's image within the community.

By identifying your target audience, you can focus publicity directly on those you are hoping to help. Your promotional efforts (i.e. posters, news releases to media, public speaking) should focus on the desire of all parents to raise children who are cooperative, responsible, and able to resist peer pressure. It's also a good idea to emphasize that parenting education can help parents develop communication skills that will help them in the challenging teen years.

Details Make the Difference…

  1. Select the dates and times you will present the Active Parenting of Teens program. Remember that the workshop is formatted for sessions which will last approximately 2.5 hours.
  2. Select the location based on cost, comfort, and convenience. Don't forget to think about parking! Arrange for the necessary equipment: chairs, tables, TV/DVD, chalkboard or dry-erase board, flip chart, or overhead projector. Decide how refreshments will be handled. These responsibilities can be divided up among committee members.
  3. Determine registration fees and procedures. If you charge a fee, it should include the cost of the Parent's Guide. Keep your promotional costs in mind without runnng the fee up so high that your workshop is unaffordable to your targeted audience.
  4. Decide how registration will be taken: by phone, fax, mail, and/or e-mail. Make registration easy by assuring that the forms are widely available and simple to complete—good response improves your chances for success and future programs. Assign a committee member to contact registrants and verify details, explore childcare needs, and give directions. Ideally, this person will also be in charge of collecting registration forms and fees.
  5. A reminder about babysitting…care is often a barrier to parent participation, so your efforts here can make a big difference in the success of your program. Often teens can be recruited to babysit in a room convenient to the parent's meeting room.
  6. And lastly, don't forget to order Parent's Guides two to three weeks prior to your first class. If you are unsure about the number of participants, make a good estimate and place an order. Unused books can be returned for credit.