Saturday, May 10, 2008

News and Notes from May Chapter meeting

Wednesday night was the May meeting for the Hudson Valley Chapter of the PKD Foundation. News and notes:

The Albany walk, which was previously reported to be off, is now back on!

The PKD Foundation will be holding a series of conference calls for volunteers, where they will provide training in areas such as corporate sponsorship, media relations and recruiting.

The target date for the Walk website to be up and running is mid-June.

United Way of Westchester County is holding a Walk for What Matters on June 7th. The way this works is that you can form a team (or walk individually) and the funds you raise go to the charity of your choice. I think this is a great concept for those many local charities that are too small to organize walks of their own.

GINA passes!

Like many other charities, the PKD Foundation now takes vehicle donations. So, if you've got an old clunker sitting around that you need to get rid of, consider donating it to the PKD Foundation. You'll be helping a good cause and getting a tax benefit at the same time.

The bulk of the meeting was then spent discussing the status of the various committees. The focus right now is on getting corporate sponsorships and in kind donations of food and raffle prizes. It seems we currently have a little over $1000 in corporate sponsorships committed and are off to a good start on food and in-kind donations. The big items still to be covered are a tent, a helium tank and plaques/trophies.

I've agreed to help Michele out in the area of corporate sponsorships by trying to recruit additional sponsorships in the Dutchess County area. About a week ago I sent out nine requests for corporate sponsorship and hope to get another five or so out this weekend. One company was kind enough to respond and respectfully decline, but I haven't heard back from any of the others yet. This is the first time I've ever attempted this sort of thing. Turns out it takes a good amount of time to track down contacts, put together letters and get the packages out. And later, it'll take more time in followups. I hope that at least one company comes through with something to make it feel like it was worth the effort.

Unfortunately, Diane wasn't there to give an update on Media/PR. I've agreed to help her out by handling publicity in the Dutchess County area, but I'm feeling pretty ignorant of what to do at the moment. I understand that this really needs to get going over the next couple of months, so I'll have to be a quick learner.

The conference call originally planned for May 12th is cancelled.

There will be a support group meeting at Michele's house in White Plains on May 28th, subject to cancellation if there are no RSVPs.

The next chapter walk planning meeting is scheduled for June 3rd.

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