One of the most important elements of your SADD chapter is its members. They are the lifeblood of your chapter -- without members to do your projects and activities, your SADD chapter will not survive. Reaching out to your general school community to recruit new members each year is crucial. Equally important is keeping members once they have joined. Once you have them hooked, don't let them go. The following are some ideas for recruiting new members and keeping them committed.

  • -Put up posters about SADD around school. Be sure to make them fun and easy to read, with all the information available at a glance. Students walk down the hall in a hurry -- your poster must "jump" out at them. Offer food -- this is often a big draw to get students to the meeting.
  • -Visit freshman classes and give out a SADD information sheet. Tell them what your SADD chapter does and invite them to join. Make the meeting sound fun and appealing. Provide a sign up sheet for each class.
  • -Follow up with a special meeting for freshmen. They may be especially skittish about just showing up at a general meeting, so cultivate them first and make them feel welcome.
  • -Host a special informational meeting for kids who are just interested in finding out more about SADD. Provide pizza, ice cream or other snacks.
  • -Make announcements about your meetings on the PA. Be sure your announcements are clear, concise, and creative -- students tend to "tune out" announcements. Follow up with posters announcing your meeting dates, times and locations.
  • -Put invitations to join on the windshields of students' cars.
  • -Write an article for your school newsletter about SADD and its members, activities and goals.
  • -Invite people personally to increase the response. Everyone wants to be asked.
  • -Put up a SADD bulletin board or display case with posters, pictures, news clips, etc. about what SADD does.
  • -Let people know they can join any time.
  • -Visit other organizations in your school, speak to them about SADD and ask them to work with your SADD chapter.
  • -Do a skit or rap during lunch to let everyone know about SADD and invite them to a meeting.
  • -Be sure to reach out to a diverse group of students. Always remember that SADD is an inclusive organization -- you cannot help students with alcohol or other problems if you shut them out.
  • -Ensure that your meetings are fun. Make an extra effort to introduce everyone so that no one feels left out.
  • -Put everyone to work right away. If you don't have work for them to do, they will think that you don't need them. Good luck! Building a strong chapter is a sign of good leadership.