Step 1: Building Your Foundation
The stronger your foundation, the more lives you will change.
- Promote RallyCap Sports On Campus
- Build Your RallyTeam And RallyCore
- Establish Your RallyChapter
- Map Out Year One
- Fundraise For Your Kickoff
Step 1: Promote RallyCap Sports On Campus
If you're at this point, then you have demonstrated the passion we believe it takes to have a successful RallyChapter - it's time to start sharing your passion with others! Here are a few ideas to get started:
- Talk about RallyCap in your classes and in other organizations your involved in
- Reach out (via email, text, call, etc) to people you know would love RallyCap - share what we're all about!
- Talk about bringing RallyCap to your campus on social media, see who engages with you (make sure you provide a link to the RallyCap Sports website... it will do the explaining for you!)
We believe our mission is powerful, but it's only as powerful as the passion behind those who share it! We're confident that you have the passion, but if you need a little help putting it into words check out the What We Do and Who We Are tabs on our website.
Easy first step, right? Simply share your passion for RallyCap on campus, we're confident others will want to get involved. It won't be long before people want to jump on board and be a part of your chapter - now your RallyTeam will start to come together!
Step 2: Build Your RallyCore and RallyTeam
The "RallyTeam" is all of the volunteers that make RallyCap Sports happen (you can learn more RallyTeam details here). The "RallyCore" (also referred to as "Core") is a group of dedicated RallyTeam members who lead your chapter and are responsible for the planning and execution of all RallyChapter initiatives. Building your RallyCore is the most important step of preparing for a successful first year. Let's focus in on your RallyCore, here are a few important details to get started:
- The "Director" is the leader of the RallyCore. This position is chosen by your RallyCoach and is typically the person who went through the steps of bringing RallyCap Sports to your campus
- One of the most important roles of the RallyCore is your "RallyAdvisor". Your RallyAdvisor is a current member of your college/university faculty or staff and will be a foundational element of your Core
- Assembling your Core will ensure your chapter's success, so it will be important to find students who are truly passionate about the RallyCap mission and who will carry out the responsibilities of their position
Here are the RallyCore positions that you must fill before your Kickoff:
- Operations Chair
- Volunteer Coordinator Chair
- Finance Chair
A "Chair" position is designed to be the head of a committee. At the start, each Chair will be on their own, and as your chapter grows you will add committee members as needed under each Chair. For example, when it is determined that your Operations Chair needs help, you can add Core members who become a part of the Operations Team. Along with the mandatory Core positions above, we also have recommended positions that you may add as needed.
You can learn more about the roles and responsibilities of the RallyCore and committees by checking out The RallyCore section in your Manual. So, head on over to The RallyCore section to learn the details, and when you're ready you can move on to building your Core.
Find Your RallyAdvisor
The first step to building your RallyCore is to find a passionate RallyAdvisor. Here are some thoughts to get started:
- Your RallyAdvisor must be a current member of your college/university faculty or staff
- You should seek out individuals who have a passion for the special needs community and who have experience with student organizations - get on the phone or schedule in-person meetings to discuss bringing them on board
- Your RallyCoach will be heavily involved in this process with you, finding an awesome RallyAdvisor is a vital step in the process of building your team - reach out to your RallyCoach for questions and help
Again, you can find details about the responsibilities of your RallyAdvisor in The RallyCore section of your manual. Although your RallyAdvisor may or may not be involved in the day-to-day operations of your chapter, this role is an important part of establishing your chapter on campus - most colleges/universities require a faculty/staff advisor for all student organizations, so we are just keeping you ahead of the curve. Your RallyCoach is your best resource here, they will be able to help you find the right person for the job.
Hold Your First RallyCap Meeting
Once you have a committed RallyAdvisor, you will hold your first RallyCap Sports meeting by inviting anyone and everyone who has shown interest in being a part of your RallyChapter. The Director and RallyAdvisor will put together an informal meet-up to share more information about RallyCap. This meet-up should be simple, here are the elements we suggest:
- Explain RallyCap Sports, who we are and what we do. We highly recommend showing the highlight video on our website (located here) because it does a great job of really showing what RallyCap Sports is all about
- Let people know how important volunteers will be and that all are welcome to be a part of the RallyTeam
- Explain what RallyCore is, the positions that are available and how to apply (learn more below)
- Your meeting should be up-beat and fun! Keep it informal and fresh, we aren't starting just another boring organization here...
- Make sure you collect names and email addresses of people who attend (here is a simple sign-in sheet you can print out to record attendee information - don't worry... this will all be done online soon enough! )
- Maybe the most important part is... follow-up! The day after your meeting, send a follow-up email to those who attended. Thank them for coming, give them information to act on if they are interested, and make sure you include the RallyCap Sports website so they can learn more
Applying For A RallyCore Position
To apply for a RallyCore position, a student must fill out a RallyCore Application (download by clicking on the link, also available in your RallyChapter Support Center) and send it to you. The application we have put together for you is simply a template. Before sending out or giving out the RallyCore Application you should consider adding information like: your college/university name, due date, other positions that are open, more information about the positions, other extended response questions, etc.
We recommend setting a deadline of two weeks for applications (make sure you attach the application to your follow-up email). We also encourage you to distribute the application in a more personal and direct way to people you think are a perfect fit for Core. These applications are not rocket science, like we've been saying... we're trying to help you get started!
- Quick Break -
Okay, we're making progress... Here is a summary of the steps we've discussed so far:
- Promote RallyCap Sports on campus
- Find a faculty or staff member who wants to serve as your RallyAdvisor
- Hold your first RallyTeam meeting and promote RallyCore positions
- Distribute the RallyCore Application and set a deadline for people who are interested
*Keep your RallyCoach in the loop and ask him/her any questions!
Selecting Your RallyCore
Now you have your RallyCore Applications and it's time to build your team. Work with your RallyAdvisor and RallyCoach to choose the students who best fit the positions you need. Check out these details:
- Once you have filled the mandatory positions, you should consider whether additional positions make sense at this time (more Core members isn't always a good idea, chat with your RallyCoach if you're not sure what to do)
- Not everyone wants or needs to have a Core position, you will have many students who are happy to serve as general RallyTeam members - the more passionate volunteers the better!
- For a student who does not want to serve as a Chair Core member, but is interested in helping in a more involved role... joining a Core committee is a great way to help out (learn about committees here)
- Send an email to each person who applied for Core and let them know if they were selected for a position or not - make sure you let those who did not make Core know that you hope they will be a part of the RallyTeam
First RallyCore Meeting
Now you're rolling! Time to have your first official RallyCore meeting, and first on the agenda is establishing your RallyChapter. To help you get started, we have put together a few of the important tasks of your first meeting:
- Decide on a set RallyCore meeting time and place moving forward (we recommend weekly or bi-weekly)
- Start a private Facebook group for the Core to use for communicating and updating (we recommend Facebook Groups for this, but if you have a different idea - go for it!)
- Establish your chapter with RallyCap Headquarters (see below)
- Establish your chapter at your college/university (see below)
Before your first official RallyCore meeting, check in with your RallyCoach. He or she will walk you through the steps of establishing your chapter (that you will learn below) and provide insight for a productive (and fun!) first meeting.
Step 3: establish Your RallyChapter
Establish is a bit of a scary word - don't worry! Before you can really do anything else, you need to make sure you are all set with RallyCap Headquarters and your college/university.
One major part of establishing with RallyCap Headquarters is getting set-up with your very own chapter website. You probably remember your RallyCoach talking about your website back when you started game-planning, but now it's time to get set up so that you can benefit from the awesome resource that your website will become for your Core. Here are some basic details:
- Each RallyChapter will have their own chapter website and it will be automatically linked to the RallyCap national website so that people in your area can find you
- You will use your chapter website to manage and communicate with your RallyTeam and your RallyPlayers (or their parents/guardians)
- Each member of your RallyChapter will become a member of your chapter website, this will allow you to manage their information and communicate with them
- Your chapter website is included in the exclusive resources we provide for active chapters who pay their chapter dues - yes, the value of your very own website provided by RallyCap Sports is easily more costly than an entire year of chapter dues (just one of the many ways we take care of you!)
- Your chapter website was designed with you in mind; it will be easy for your team to manage your website - we promise!
When you began the process of bringing RallyCap Sports to your campus, our staff went ahead and created a website for you - so, it's ready to go! Your RallyCoach will teach you the basics through a screen-share session, so set that up with them as soon as you are ready. At your first RallyCore meeting you need to get your Core registered on the website and walk them through how it works (eventually, you will want a Core member who is dedicated to staying on top of your chapter website).
Establish On Campus
Each college or university has their own way of starting a new organization on campus, and that is why you should work closely with your RallyCoach to develop a game-plan for what it takes to be established at your campus. Here is a bit of insight:
- Finding the steps to "start a new organization" at your campus should be as easy as locating it on your university website or finding a phone number to the department that manages student organizations
- Following the guidelines your college/university has set up for this process is important - you want to be in good standing and have a good relationship with that department
- Most colleges/universities have these basic requirements to start a chapter: a president (director), faculty advisor (RallyAdvisor), small leadership team (Core), and some sort of simple constitution (here you can dowload a template we have put together for you and adjust it as needed) - as you can see, you should already have most of the requirements met!
- Your RallyCoach will be your best resource for this because they have gone through the process of starting an organization before and will be able to provide personal insight and help
Once you have uncovered the steps it will take to establish at your university, you should delegate these tasks to the Core to ensure a speedy process. RallyCap Sports relies on the relationship of your RallyChapter with your college/university. Once established, you will be able to tap into the resources that your campus provides for student organizations - play nice!
Step 4: Map out year one
If you followed the steps and used the resources provided, then you have:
- A dedicated RallyAdvisor who is ready to help build your chapter
- A committed RallyCore in place who is ready to plan and execute your first event with you
- Good standing with RallyCap Headquarters and you are an official organization on your campus
- Sparked the interest of other students who want to be a part of your RallyTeam
It's important to have these steps completed before you move forward! Please work with your RallyCoach to complete these initiatives before you start planning your Kickoff. Timing is an important part of a successful Kickoff... so be proactive.
Build A Timeline With Your RallyCoach
As each chapter will be working within a timeline suited to their campus and RallyCore's schedule, your RallyCoach will work with you to map out a timeline for your Kickoff and Year One. If you haven't discussed a timeline with your RallyCoach yet, here are a few things you will talk about:
- Complete "Step One: Building Your Foundation" a semester (or several months) prior to your Kickoff
- You will need to raise funds prior to your Kickoff in order to purchase necessary equipment (see final step below)
- It's best to have your Kickoff at the beginning of a new school year, within the first few weeks of classes (energy is high at school and momentum is key)
- Allow yourself time to plan your first RallySeason, as it will begin immediately following your Kickoff
- When you're ready, refer to Step 2 of this guide for planning and executing a successful Kickoff, read through Step 3 to tackle the planning of your first season - but don't get ahead of yourself... stick with our step-by-step process here!
So, give your RallyCoach a call and map out your first year of RallyCap Sports together. This will lead you into the final step of building your foundation, fundraising for your Kickoff.
Step 5: Fundraise for your Kickoff
A fundraiser to put you on the map. Even better, it's all planned out for you.
Check out this short clip to learn about your first fundraiser, then take a look at the details below!
Okay, so you probably remember your RallyCoach talking about how your finances will work, but you tuned him/her out because just hearing the word "finances" makes you yawn. You can get the details by checking out the Chapter Finances section of your manual, it's good to get a solid understanding from the start.
As you heard from the video above, we have a quick and easy fundraiser put together that will help you generate some dough (maybe a lot of dough) and will help advertise your fresh-off-the-grill organization - and get people excited about it!
Here's how it works:
- We offer you the classic RallyCap Sports t-shirt for $7.00 a shirt
- You and your Core advertise the t-shirt on campus (easier done if your Core is wearing the shirt) for $12.00 (or more) a shirt and start collecting orders and money
- You send in the order and money through MyRallyCap and we send you the t-shirts at the $7.00 price we promised (plus a flat rate shipping charge of $10)
- You distribute and start seeing the t-shirts come alive on campus
Okay, so maybe you hate math, but this is pretty simple math. Sell 100 shirts for $12.00 each = $1,200. Now subtract out the cost of the shirts at $700 ($7.00 each), that brings you to a profit of $500. Pretty easy, right? So, after deducting the $10.00 shipping charge... you'll make about $500 without breaking a sweat - that's enough to cover your entire first year's dues!
You will place your order in RallyShop, so learn some details about RallyShop here. Now, get the rest of the details (shirt color, timing, ect.) from your RallyCoach and start raking in the dough.
Hint*: We will dive deeper into this later, but if you really want to get a head start on Fundraising for your chapter, check out the Fundraising section in your RallyCap Manual.