For families, it is important that parents understand the structure of the program and feel comfortable sending their children to the program site. These events are great for answering questions, completing paperwork, and relationship building with staff.

Family Events

  • Depending on context, family events could be an informal get- together, simulation of a program day to get parents and students excited about summer, or a more formal orientation
    • Snapshot from the field: Open House at Jackson Mann:
    • Snapshot from the field: Courageous Sailing’s Orientation Agenda (read more:
      • 5:00pm – Slide show of last year’s program
      • 5:15pm – Families begin to arrive
      • 5:30pm – Goodie bags distributed
      • 5:40pm – Opening Remarks (non-profit lead and recruitment coordinator)
      • 5:45pm – SLP video
      • 6:00pm – Dinner & Meet and Greet
      • 6:30pm – Wrap Up
    • Consider having “parent ambassadors” available to speak about their positive interaction with the program or children talk a bit about their favorite experience
      • Parent video testimonials from Hale Reservation (we would need permission to post) –
    • Holding raffles for prizes related to the program can be an effective way to increase attendance at the event

Student Workshops

Hold an event, during or after school, to extend activities from the summer into the school year. Examples: an art class, science experiment, recreational activity. (see blog and photos from one event held in 2014:

“Holiday” Event at Summer Site

Bring families together to celebrate “holidays” – an opportunity to create a themed event: Valentine’s Day, St Patrick’s Day, April Fool’s Day, and Memorial Day.

Field Trips

  • Could happen during the school day (with school permission), immediately following the end of the school day, or on a weekend/vacation
  • Strategies include: students attending site after school for activities, or inviting students and families to site for simulation of program day
  • Consider serving dinner at this event

Community Service Event

A strategic date to organize a community service event would be Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which is the national day of service.