How to Start a Booster Club!

Sit everyone down for your first meeting and get organized.  Elect some officers, write the bylaws, forge a plan of action, raise some funds and you are off and running!  You have started a booster club.  Ok, well maybe it's not quite that easy, but let us show you in simple steps how easy the process of starting a booster club can be...

Booster Clubs are born when people like you and me decide that our favorite team could benefit from some extra support.  That support can be financial but most likely is material in nature.  Team apparel, food for travel, team meals, practice equipment, training aids, camp sponsorships, sports drinks, awards, banquets and even fan gadgets are all items being provided by booster clubs.  All this support is great for the team receiving it, but what does it really take to start a booster club?

Meet - The club starts by gathering a group of people with passion and energy who have a common interest in supporting a sports team or activity.  Call them together for the first official meeting.  Spread the word so that others may join in on the fun.  Advertise your organizational meeting in newspapers and on the internet.  Make sure the whole community knows about this new opportunity.

Elections - Start the meeting off with a welcome and introduction.  Let everyone know why they are present.  Quickly follow with the election of officers.  Review “Robert’s Rules of Order” to get an idea of how a meeting should be conducted and how elections should take place.  Ask for nominees and vote for a winner among the nominees.  The most common offices to fill are:  President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer.  However, you may find it necessary to create other top positions based on your needs.  Other positions could be:  Fundraising Chairperson, Financial Secretary, Public Relations, Foodbooth Coordinator, etc. 

Mission Statement / Purpose - The next step is probably the most important one- creating a mission statement, a purpose!  Take your time, give it a lot of thought, and chisel into stone the reason this club will exist.  Once you have a mission statement, use it to guide you and keep you focused at all times on what you are doing and why.  Here’s a good example:

“To support the boys’ basketball programs in the Central Area School District and to encourage good sportsmanship towards the sport officials, opposing team members, and out-of-town visitors’ at all basketball events and to aid in projects that will promote the basketball program.”

Bylaws - Follow that with the second most important step- creating a set of bylaws.  The bylaws will be your guidelines, your rules and regulations.  Bylaws will tell you how to handle all situations.  Sections that should be included in the bylaws are:  name, objectives, membership, board of directors and officers, financial guidelines, meetings, amendments, and disbandment of the club. 

Protection – Accidents can happen.  You want to make sure that your booster club is protected from legal actions from accidents and other causes.  Educate yourself and your booster club on the laws in your area and your state.  Purchase liability insurance to protect against the unexpected.

Plan of Action – Quickly determine a list of your team’s needs and desires.  Research each item so you know what it costs, and how and where you will purchase it.  Once that list is complete then you will have an idea of how much money is needed to fulfill the list of items.  This will become your booster club budget.  Prioritize the list of needs and start to plan your fundraising efforts.

Fundraising – The possibilities for booster club fundraising activities are endless.  Decide which fundraisers are best for your area.  Focus on the fundraisers that are maximum profit and minimum work!  You want to get the “biggest bang for the buck.”  Make your efforts payoff.  If you live in an area with many businesses, choose fundraisers that target sponsorships.  If you live in a rural area then you may have to rely on bake sales, events and raffles.  When you find fundraisers that work, stick with them.

Communicate – The main ingredient in a successful booster club is: communication! With communication you will thrive, without it, you will fail.  Talk about it, demand it, practice it and benefit from it.  Communication gets everyone on the same page.  Communication avoids mistakes, misunderstandings and conflicts.  Utilize conversations, emails, phone calls, text messaging and social media to communicate with everyone involved in your booster club. 


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