Creating an Outreach Plan

My team is going to create an outreach plan that is about our strategy to engage in the community and the kind of outreach we have done, are doing, and are planning to do.

Do any other teams have outreach and engagement plans? If so, how was it structured and what advice to you have for making one?

My team would appreciate any help!

Most of our work with outreach is local schools and businesses. Our team has students from our county, so what we do is this.

  1. Talk to our students, figure out their middle + HS schools were, and if they had faculty who liked them there. This especially comes in handy with freshmen.
  2. Make a list of schools in order of proximity / ease of demonstration.
  3. Coordinate with them to get in contact with their Middle / Elementary school to do a robot demo.
  4. If the demo goes well, ask the teacher if they’d like to start an FLL / FTC team, and we’re off from there.

The most difficult part of any outreach is getting a foot in the door, same as getting sponsors. Use what you have to get in the door.

On Herobotics, there are a couple of questions we ask ourselves before deciding on attending an outreach event. I guess you could call it our outreach plan. :stuck_out_tongue:

  1. Do we have time for it?

Build Season can be a very stressful and time intensive period, so don’t overload yourself with too many events. Pretty much all outreach is good outreach, but when it comes to questions raised like this, it’s especially good to prioritize events that will have the most impact. After all, the team can’t be in three places at once! :stuck_out_tongue: Try to reach the most people, and spread the message of FIRST or your team to the most diverse audience (adults, children, business people, etc.).

  1. What items do we need to make this event successful?

People looove charming and engaging activities at outreach events. Our team tries to always bring one of our older robots, table fittings, a few students to talk about the program, and our mascot. These items attract people to your table/booth/spot/etc., and encourage them to learn more about your team and FIRST. Think about the demographics at the event as well: is it going to be kids, parents, CEOs? Having a checklist of items to bring to the event that will attract the main demographic to your team and wow them is essential.

I know that this isn’t exactly a plan like you requested, but I figured that at least sharing our strategy for making our outreach the most effective could help! :stuck_out_tongue: