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Making a Timeline

Day calendarPHA created a sample timeline to assist in your planning process. You do not need to follow it exactly, as each event is different. Some events will take more time (golf tournaments and fun walks), and some less (house parties). All of them will have a different timeline!

Create a timeline of your own with objectives and goals to follow in the months leading up to your event! If you need help making a timeline for your event, email PHA’s Special Events Manager at to connect you with a mentor who can help!

see also forms and other resources by timeline of your event in the Event Organizer Resource Center

5-12 months:

  • Pick a date.
  • Select an event venue, secure any required permits and request insurance from PHA if necessary.
  • Recruit committee members  (a team of dedicated volunteers working together) and create a schedule including the following:
    • Make a plan for recruiting participants.
    • Compile a list of prizes or other goods you would like to have donated.  Find donors or local businesses to contribute these items.
    • Secure sponsorships. You want to start making sponsorship requests as early as possible as many companies take several months to make a decision, or may work on a first come first served basis.  Keep a list of all of your prospective sponsors, and update it is as you go with how much they donate or if they deny your request.  When the event is over, send a copy of the list to PHA to double check that all sponsorships have been
    • Contact PHA to establish an event account with PHA -- send registration and donation checks to PHA on a weekly basis.

4-5 months:

  • Design and order promotional materials (brochures, registration forms, etc.) from a printer.
  • For events that can incorporate pledges or sponsors from participants:
    • Contact PHA for help with creating a First Giving registration page.
    • Encourage early registrants to start asking for pledges and sponsorships from their friends and family; the easiest way to do this is through a Firstgiving webpage.
  • Continue to mail checks for registrations and sponsorships each week to PHA.

3 months:

  • Compile a “database” or binder of contact information of participants, volunteers and vendors you are working with, so you can keep everyone’s contact information organized and accessible if you need it.
  • Focus on spreading news of your event and recruiting walkers and event day volunteers. Connect with PHA’s Advocacy and Awareness Associate to learn more about promoting your event in local news and radio at
  • Continue to work with local companies and businesses to secure sponsorships and donations.
  • Email registrants and interested participants about First Giving and encourage them to register online and create their own fundraising page to collect pledges and donations.
  • Send checks and monies collected each week to PHA.

2 months:

  • Begin to have more regular committee meetings, in person or by phone.
  • Ensure that the committee is following through with specialized tasks and responsibilities specific to your event.
  • Check on the status of sponsorships and large in-kind donations such as food, silent-auction items, etc.
  • Continue to send checks to PHA, we can send you mailing envelopes and postage if necessary.

1 month:

  • Assign committee members to follow up with registered participants (call or e-mail) as a friendly reminder about one week prior to the event.
  • Pick up donations for the event (food, drinks, silent auction or goody bag items, etc.)
  • Confirm deliveries for the event day (tents, tables, signs etc.)


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The information provided on the PHA website is provided for general information only. It is not intended as legal, medical or other professional advice, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultations with qualified professionals who are familiar with your individual needs.

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The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.