Building Connections with your Community

From a practical perspective, getting involved with your community is a good thing and helping in the community is rewarding in itself. Community involvement can help enhance an outlet’s uniqueness and drive customer loyalty and appreciation of the service that is offered- retailers are at the heart of communities being a place for locals to meet and find out what’s going on, so doing things that cement this position is good.

Getting Started

Make contact

Contact your local community centre, local clubs, favourite charity, local associations or other community groups. Are they having an event, are they raising money for a cause, do they need your help?

Community Event Community Event

How to support an Event

Look for opportunities to advertise what's going on- community events need people to know about them and the local store is in the perfect position to help communicate

Offer to put up posters and flyers

Tell your customers about the event, ‘word of mouth’ is a great promoter. It also gives you something to talk about with customers and helps engage them with you

Offer to help at the event - ask organisers how

Offer to buy products for the event at discounted rates

Donate product or prizes

Drop by the event and show your support, have a go at the activity if you can

Donation Bucket

Everyday things you can do in store with customers

  • Put up a notice board for local events and organisations to use.
  • Have a charity box
  • Become a member of local groups
  • Join local campaigns
  • Get involved!

Organising and running your own event

It's complex and involves a lot of resources to organise and run your own event. This is why we recommend you support an event that is already being organised by a community group.

However if you really want to run your own event, there are some things you'll need to consider.

Planning

  • Who is the event for? Who will you target?
  • How many people do you want and expect to attend
  • How many people will you need to help plan, organise and run the event
  • What dates are you thinking of? Are there local things happening at the same time?
  • How far in advance do you need to plan and prepare
  • How many people will you need to set up and run the event
  • Who in your network can support you
  • Which community groups will work with you
  • Can you get local press/social media involved
  • Do you need to get permission from local authorities

Budget

  • How much will it cost? Who will pay?
  • How much will you cover these costs?
  • Do you have a contingency fund or a reserve should there be an unexpected payment
  • If you run a 'stand alone' event it is recommended you set up a separate bank account

Venue

You'll want to check out potential venues to find out if they are suitable for your needs. Checkout things like size, parking, accessibility, toilet facilities and if an outdoor venue-shelter in case of poor weather

Permissions, Licenses, Insurance

  • You'll need to apply for public liability insurance and if you are serving food/food concessions, you'll need food hygiene safety certificates and safe food storage
  • Bear in mind that getting applications takes time and money

Risk Assessments

Healthy and Safety is very important, you'll need to conduct a health and safety risk assessment prior to your event and create a plan to manage and reduce any potential risks such as medical emergencies, theft, lost children.
We recommend you find an experienced recognized expert to help you.

Safe guarding Children and Vulnerable Adults

If you are running an event where children and vulnerable adults will be present you will be responsible for ensuring their safety. You'll need to have a clean 'criminal record bureau' certificate check (CRB), which is applied for via your local police station

IF YOU HAVE HAD A SUCCESSFUL LOCAL EVENT WHY NOT GET IN TOUCH AND SHARE YOUR IDEA?

Dave

So you can see it's complex to run your own event and it takes a lot of resource, however we hope this list helps you to get thinking about how to get involved with your community.