International Transplant Nurses Society
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Chapter Development Tips

Member Recruitment

  • Stress the importance of membership diversity: nurses, coordinators, pharmacists, and social workers
  • Host a new member social event: pizza, dessert, or brunch party
  • Hold a new member recruitment campaign with a prize to the member who recruits the most new members
  • Have a designated board member who is responsible for recruitment activities
  • Invite all non-members to your meetings. This may increase their interest in your chapter
  • Contact the ITNS home office (Member Services at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) for recruitment brochures and membership applications
  • Promote ITNS during nurse's week, local health fair days, orientations, conferences and workshops
  • Challenge each member to recruit one new member per year
  • Sponsor a chapter awareness day. Distribute ITNS brochures and wear your ITNS pin!
  • Encourage your board members to be membership ambassadors. Provide them with brochures and membership applications to distribute to non-members
  • Contact local leaders, administrators, and physicians at area hospitals; transplant centers and universities to find out how to spread the word about ITNS
  • Always include an announcement in your chapter newsletter calling for new members, inviting non-members to chapter events, and provide a membership application
  • Make contact with potential members who initially decline membership and ask why

Member Retention

  • Form a new member committee responsible for making new members feel welcome and comfortable
  • Send a survey to members asking them for suggestions and ideas
  • Announce and introduce new members at meetings
  • Get new members involved immediately so that they feel part of the chapter
  • Send new members a welcome letter within 1 month after joining
  • Recognize member milestone anniversaries
  • Notify a member's employer and publish member's name in chapter and international newsletter when he/she is recognized in the chapter via award, grant, or assumes a leadership role
  • Rotate dates, times and location of meetings
  • When retaining a member, try to find out what is important to him/her
  • Include pictures of members in the chapter newsletter
  • Ask all members for their email address. This is an easy, cheap and quick form of communication
  • Make personal phone calls. Try to find out why a member does not renew
  • Conduct a letter writing or phone call campaign for inactive members
  • Offer continuing education credits for educational programs. Contact ITNS Account Administrator Muneeb Jaffry at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .
  • Offer educational grants for your membership

Increasing Member Participation

  • Mail or email reminders to members about upcoming meetings and other chapter events.
  • Try to alternate date, time and location of meetings between transplant centers.
  • Collaborate with other ITNS chapters or other nursing organizations. You will get a stronger turnout and have access to more resources.
  • Personally ask each member to participate in one chapter activity or serve on a chapter committee each year.
  • Provide a chapter newsletter for your membership.
  • Provide chapter goals to your members. Provide contact numbers for specific goals in case the member is interested in getting involved.

Recognizing Members

  • Honor members with chapter awards. Seek to honor those who devote a lot of time and energy to volunteer work
  • Present certificates of recognition to members for chairing or directing projects or contributing in any significant way
  • Remind each member of his/her importance and value to the organization
  • Never underestimate the power of a personal thank you note
  • Recognize members who always contribute to fundraisers and events
  • Send letters to all officers, committee chairs and committee members to thank them for serving as their term ends. If possible, include a few examples of how their efforts benefited the chapter
  • Notify employers and publish member’s name in chapter and international newsletter when a member as done something of value for the chapter, received an award or grant, or assumed a leadership position

Developing Leaders within the Chapter

  • Develop a past president's council and use it as a sounding board for chapter ideas and problems
  • Nominate successful chapter leaders for international office
  • Allow volunteers to work creatively to make their job a success
  • Encourage current leaders to identify members who would make good successors when their term is up
  • Work to transition experienced committee members into leadership positions
  • Encourage officers to attend the Chapter Leader's Meeting at the Annual ITNS Symposium

Officer Transition

  • Hold a mandatory officer transition meeting each year
  • Keep organized detailed binders for each position to pass along to the next person who assumes that role
  • Develop a policy and procedure manual that details specific officer roles and duties as well as other important chapter information
  • Form a past president and/or former officer committee
  • Notify the chapter development chairperson of ITNS with all election results and names of new officers with effective date of change

Chapter Planning

  • Develop an annual program of work with goals and strategies derived from the chapter's strategic plan
  • Set realistic goals for the chapter, start small and work toward larger goals
  • Continually review and revise the chapter’s goals and objectives
  • Schedule important dates for board meetings well in advance so everyone can mark his/her calendars

Develop a Chapter Action Plan

  • What idea do we want to implement?
  • What actions are required to accomplish it?
  • Who are the people who can help us?
  • Which chapter office or committee will be responsible?
  • When do we want to have this accomplished?

Program Planning

  • Invite a distinguished lecturer to speak at a chapter program
  • Make sure chapter programs follow a wide variety of topics
  • Keep programs on time and stick to the agenda
  • Present current interest programs for members
  • Ask your local Pharmaceutical or health care representative to sponsor your programs
  • Participate in planning international meetings. Invite the ITNS Annual Symposium to your city
  • Use chapter members as your speakers
  • Ask local merchants to donate refreshments for your meetings
  • List your chapter activities on the ITNS web site:
  • Develop a chapter speaker's bureau
  • Collaborate with local organizations or another ITNS chapter to pool resources

Increasing Visibility and Communication

  • Develop a chapter web site
  • Create a listserv to send out timely announcements and reminders
  • Develop a chapter newsletter
  • Have an ITNS bulletin board in your nursing unit, transplant center, clinic, etc.
  • Participate in Nurse's week activities and career day events
  • Sponsor community events such as blood pressure screenings

Increasing Chapter Non-Dues Revenue

  • Hold at least one fundraiser per year
  • Thank all volunteers, contributors, vendors and participants
  • Hold a raffle of donated items at the conclusion of each chapter meeting
  • Create chapter sales items using your chapter logo and name. (I.e. T-shirts, mugs, sweatshirts, tote bags, post-it-notes, etc.)
  • Contact the ITNS home office to purchase ITNS logo items to be sold at your chapter meetings
  • Always provide members with various ways they can contribute (i.e. donating auction or raffle items)
  • Identify a local celebrity who can be recruited to help with a function. Not only will you raise funds, but also you might receive media exposure
  • Increase educational grant funds by targeting solicitation of funds from transplant care industries
  • Form and utilize a fundraising committee
  • Raffle off donated centerpieces after meetings and conferences
  • Consider a transplant recipient fashion show, ornament auction, bake sale or wine tasting as possible fundraising events

Chapter Resources

Developing Chapter Newsletters

Chapter Web Site Tips

Chapter FAQs

Chapter Development Tips

Developing Chapter Continuing Education

Educational Funding Opportunities

Developing Chapter Journal Clubs

Developing Chapter Study Groups