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LEADERSHIP MONTGOMERY - Torchbearers Class "connecting"



Project Name:   Renascence House—Ping Pong Tournament

Team Members:   JaTaune Bosby, Elton Brooks, Julie Knight, Lisa Ranieri, Phelps Reid, Kadedra Smith, Laurel Teel, Antonio Williams 

Chairperson:   Nancy Bradford (Event Chair), Mary Lil Owens (Board Chair)

Dates of Implementation:   First board meeting—May 12| Event—August 12-13

Duration of project:   Two months

Project location:   Crump Senior Center

Media Outlets: Alabama News Network, Bell Media

Name of those responsible for securing photos: Elton Brooks

Name of those responsible for writing/producing news stories:

Laurel Teel (press release), Lisa Ranieri (produced news story)

Whom did the project benefit? The residents housed by Renascence during the 6-month reentry process and the staff that maintain the house and program.

Groups involved (sponsors): Over 30 community sponsors including Alabama Power, Bell Media, Bumper Nets, and The Confucius Institute of AUM.

Total number of volunteer hours: Three one and a half hour board meetings (4.5) + Friday night event (4) + Saturday (5) + outreach (4) x (8) members = 140 hrs.

Vision for future project: With the launch of their inaugural fundraiser, Renascence hopes to continue garnering more support and local interest in the coming years. By collaborating with an outside organization—Ping Pong for Charity—it provides the board with a sustainable fundraising framework.

Will this be an ongoing project? Who will carry the project forward?: The ping-pong tournament will be an annual event. Currently the board is confirming details for the 2017 fundraiser.

How was the project implemented?

The Renascence House board of directors raised over $25,000 in direct and in-kind sponsorship for the event. The initial challenge was generating visibility for the reentry program and the fundraiser. Our group created a Facebook page, producing a high-level of engagement for board members and organizations that give to the program. This provided a social media presence for Renascence that enabled them to share and advertise information through one platform.

With the help of various community partners, media sponsors, and the commitment of our group volunteers, Renascence raised over $20,000 during their first ping-pong tournament fundraiser.

Describe your presentation: Our presentation will be a brief overview of our initial objective, challenges, delegating tasks, group strategy, and the outcome of the event.

Feedback provided to board:

Below is the feedback our group compiled. Note, these were simply considerations and suggestions for next year’s event. The mission of Renascence is important to the community and we were honored to support the initiative.


  • Utilizing the Google doc with each task was more functional than www.SignUpGenius.com, allowing people to access the doc and sign-up for tasks via email versus logging into another app. or program.
  • Steering committee members should be required to recruit at least 2-5 volunteers each. For example, in addition to assisting with getting participants, each TB member could have focused on securing volunteers for the day-of event.

Administrative Tasks & Communication

  • Designate one or two board members that consistently communicate with volunteers. This provides clarity for volunteers and minimizes additional tasks/redundancy.
  • Designate one person to handle all of your social media promotion. This person could delegate tasks for your Facebook page, event invites, silent auction items, etc.

Event Day

  • Separate youth and advanced divisions in the morning and afternoon.
  • Two sets of print outs for registration and sign-in.

Core Message

  • The importance of the fundraiser and whom it benefits should be the focal point of the content surrounding the ping-pong tournament.  The event is a great opportunity to educate the public on the resources Renascence provides and the opportunity for second chances.  Therefore, we should utilize every outlet/platform to do so (e.g. highlight success stories every week on FB, invite family members of residents to participate, allow residents to showcase talents and skills at the preview party—art, cooking, etc.)

Next Steps

  • Consider a video vignette as a good marketing tool. Investing in the video allows Renascence to repurpose it in any capacity. For example, it can be used to raise general awareness for your cause by posting on Facebook, good engagement/soliciting tool for a future Capital Campaign, during annual meetings with donors and staff. Clay McInnis is the contact for this; he is president of the Downtown Business Association.
Consider taking advantage of the renovation and rehabilitation that is happening in Cottage Hill. Partnerships in the community will be very beneficial going forward. Reach out to whomever is orchestrating all the Five-Points renovations, or Johnny Veres with the Sanctuary. Maybe when they have an event Renascence could be the beneficiary.

Torchbearer Class VIII Project Team 1 - Presentation 

Team 1 Project Presentation

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