Increasing Neighborhood Association Membership
One of the most difficult functions for many new (and sometimes old) Neighborhood Associations (NA) is to develop and/or sustain good attendance and participation at meetings. The following are a few tips that might help.
Talk to People in your Neighborhood
The best way to build membership is by personal invitation! Although this can be time consuming, most associations agree that personal contact is sometimes the only way to effectively bring people to meetings. Start a volunteer team of individuals (the more the merrier) who commit to contacting others. Here are three approaches:
- Friend to friend: Ask members to commit to talking to at least one new person and personally inviting them to the next meeting.
- Door to Door: Set up a block system to distribute flyers and ask each block "captain" to knock on doors and personally invite neighbors.
- Telephone to telephone: Establish a contact list and personally call individuals to attend a meeting.
Contact Other Organizations in your Neighborhood
Networking will strengthen your NA! Enrolling others to help bring new members is the next best way to increase membership. Different groups may share goals. Find out what groups are active. Chances are you have common members. Develop these connections.
- Neighborhood Schools: Ask to speak at your local PTA meetings. Or works with the school administration to identify common issues then hold a joint meeting.
- Faith Community: An informal survey of community organizations suggests a "weak" link between NAs and the faith community. Look for ways to strengthen connections.
- Nonprofit Organizations and Special Interest Groups: Identify these organizations and groups. Let them know what you are doing and look for opportunities to collaborate.
Incentives to Attend
Sometimes you need to provide extra incentives to attract people. Consider having refreshments or offering door prizes. Once you get people there you have an opportunity to give them a reason to come back ex: well run, effective, interesting meeting.