Know your allies

Maximize your impact

Identifying allies in your community can open the door to opportunities for partnership that may dramatically increase the reach of your marketing efforts and make your hard work go even further.  Every community is different, but these are some places to start.

Afterschool providers.  Teaming up with other afterschool providers in your area to raise awareness of the impact your programs are having on your community can magnify the importance of afterschool.  Need to track them down?  Your statewide afterschool network may be able to help.

Congressional Afterschool Caucuses.  In 2005, afterschool supporters in the House and Senate came together to give afterschool issues a voice on Capitol Hill.  Afterschool Caucus members come from both sides of the aisle and from 37 states—if one of your representatives is already a friend of afterschool, they could be a valuable partner.

Youth allies (and parents).  The young people in your program—and their parents—can be some of your most valuable allies!  Who can better represent the impact of an afterschool program than the youth who experience that impact every day and the parents who see their children’s growth firsthand?  Encouraging young advocates and parents to share their stories adds a personal touch that can grab attention.

Community leaders.  Afterschool programs keep kids out of trouble during the peak hours for juvenile crime, so your local police chief, sheriff and other public safety officers could be great partners.  The Fight Crime: Invest in Kids office in your region may be able to connect you to these officials—or just reach out on your own and share the compelling statistics about afterschool’s impact on juvenile crime.