Ideas for Events and Supporting the Community
Carolina Club Events
“Successful events are rooted in thoughtful, sometimes frustrating planning. You may be tempted to build a grand event full of razzle-dazzle and hoopla, but if it is not solidly anchored in mission-accomplishing strategy, your efforts – and money – will be wasted.”
— April Harris
Carolina Club events can range from informal TV viewing parties to trips to formal dinners to galas.
No matter what the event, all successful events have some commonalties:
Successful Events Start with WHY
The next time you are in your club leadership committee meeting planning your events for the next six months, ask your committee why your Carolina Club is hosting this event.
Will the event:
- Support the club’s mission?
- Achieve a specific club goal?
- Friend-raise and/or fundraise?
- Build goodwill for Carolina?
Successful Events Require PLANNING
The club leadership committee should meet annually to plan the club’s activity level for the coming year. The GAA recommends the following activity levels for clubs:
- Clubs with more than 1,000 alumni should host at least five events per year.
- Clubs with 500 – 1000 alumni should host at least three events per year.
Once the overall calendar is set, the planning for each event can begin.
Six to 12 months from event date
*Coordinator of Alumni Clubs will review contracts if you have questions
Four to six months from event date
Three – five days from event date
Day of the event
GAA Club Event Support
The Coordinator of Alumni Clubs is your personal event consultant. He will:
The mission of The University of North Carolina involves serving the citizens of our state and nation, which led the GAA to create Tar Heel Service Days and to make it a requirement for consideration for Old Well Carolina Club status. Tar Heel Service Days is a nationwide public service effort sponsored by Carolina Clubs as part of the celebration of University Day. You and your local alumni are encouraged to participate in a community service project during the month of October.
Your club can participate in Tar Heel Service Days through a variety of community service projects. These projects provide the opportunity to realize the University’s humanitarian goals while having a positive impact on society. Through community service, your club members can help the homeless, elderly, disabled, abused, illiterate, and underprivileged. Volunteering our time and talents in the name of Carolina can be one of the most rewarding opportunities for members of your Carolina Club.
Remember that an effort that is attractive to you may not be appealing to the bulk of the alumni (your prospective volunteer force). Always poll your club leadership committee, or, if possible, the club members, before launching a project. (This can be done through newsletters and club mailings.) Don’t set yourself up for a let down by becoming emotionally committed to a project in which most others are not interested. Choose a project that appeals to as many people as possible and that is a reasonable undertaking for your group. It is important to consider the number of volunteers needed to take on a project.
Don’t sign up to build an entire home for an organization if you don’t have a large group. Instead, sign up to provide some help. Also, don’t get caught up in the trap of assuming that you need a large number of volunteers to take on a project. It only takes one person to make a difference in the life of someone in need. For example, if you teach an adult to read, you are also giving that person hope and an opportunity to be fully functional in society. In this instance your impact is multifold. Never consider a project a failure.
If you can look back at the project and feel as if you and your group made a difference, then it was a worthwhile project. So, if only five volunteers respond to recruitment efforts through a newsletter–don’t worry! Put them to work and together you can make a contribution to the project.
Remember that only clubs who participate in Tar Heel Service Days are eligible for Old Well Carolina Club status.
Community Service Organizations and Projects
When trying to identify a project for your club it is often a good idea to call one of your fellow club leaders or one of the local or national community service clearinghouses. The following are some organizations you may want to contact:
Areas of Service
Homelessness and Hunger
Event Host Liabilities and Insurance
The General Alumni Association maintains a comprehensive commercial package/general liability insurance program. This coverage extends to local clubs and local clubs’ leaders when certain conditions are met by the local clubs. The GAA policy provides liability coverage for local club leaders who are members of the GAA in the performance of their duties on behalf of the GAA, provided the club leaders are acting in accordance with stated GAA policies. This coverage also applies to a spouse of club leaders who are GAA members. Thus, it is important for club leaders to maintain their GAA membership. It is also important to note that club leaders’ actions and activities must be in compliance with GAA policies. In particular, club events must comply with the GAA’s Alumni Programs and Alcoholic Beverages policy. The GAA liability insurance policy will not provide coverage to club leaders or for events at which alcoholic beverages are served in a manner in conflict with this policy.
The GAA’s policy does not replace the need for any individual club leaders’ personal liability insurance. Club leaders are encouraged to consult with their personal insurance provider.
Alcoholic beverages may only be served:
Alcoholic beverages may not be served:
At any Association event, the distribution of free alcoholic beverages, of alcoholic beverages to minors or of alcoholic beverages to anyone who is intoxicated is prohibited.
This policy was adopted by the Board of Directors of the General Alumni Association of the University of North Carolina on April 4, 1998.
Edward H. “Ned” Hardison
Chair, Board of Directors
To: Sarah Lamm
From: Steve Shaw
Re: Insurance coverage for Club activities and Club leaders
This memo contains important information about the General Alumni Association’s insurance program and important implications to the leadership and activities of local Clubs. The Alumni Association maintains a comprehensive commercial package/general liability insurance program. Our policy specifically:
This assurance should satisfy our club leaders and any vendors or facilities our local clubs may use that our policy covers Alumni Association members while performing local club activities on our behalf. I strongly encourage all club leaders and participants involved in club events to maintain their membership in the Alumni Association to enjoy the coverage that our policy extends to members. This coverage also applies to a spouse of club leaders who are GAA members. It is important to note that club leaders’ actions and activities must be in compliance with our policies. In particular, I would draw your attention and the Club’s attention to the “Alumni Programs and Alcoholic Beverages” policy approved by the Association’s Board of Directors. Our liability insurance policy will not provide coverage to club leaders or for events at which alcoholic beverages are served in a manner in conflict with this policy.
The Association’s policy is not intended to replace any individual leaders’ personal liability insurance coverage. All Club leaders should be encouraged to consult with their own insurance agent regarding their personal insurance needs.
The Association’s local agent is Duke Thompson of Summers Thompson Lowry, LLC here in Chapel Hill. He may be reached at (919) 968-4472 to verify this information. Of course, any club leader may call me at (919) 962-3599 should they have any questions or concerns.
Please feel free to share this memo with any club leader to verify our insurance coverage. I will also be happy to share a copy of the declaration page of our current policy with any club leader, upon request, if this would be helpful. Copies also are available for use by the vendors or facilities with which the local club does business.
Please let me know if you or any of our Club leaders have any questions.