From waste management to sponsorships: Insider tips for pulling off successful large-scale events in gated communities

Mr.Gowrish Prabhu
Vice President - Appartment Owner's Assosciation, Prestige Song of South

Navigating the complexities of organizing large-scale events in cosmopolitan gated communities can be daunting. Today, we sit down with Mr. Gowrish Prabhu to uncover how Prestige Song of the South tackles these challenges head-on, addressing the concerns shared by Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs) everywhere. From cultural celebrations to environmental stewardship, discover the innovative approaches and community-centric strategies that set their events apart in Bengaluru’s bustling landscape.

Q1. Why do you believe a cultural committee is essential for a gated society like yours? What unique benefits does it bring to the residents?

Cultural diversity: Bangalore is a cosmopolitan city, and our society reflects this diversity, making it essential to have a cultural committee that can organize events celebrating this rich cultural tapestry.

Effective governance: The committee plays a vital role by ensuring everyone understands what is happening within the society and who is responsible for different tasks. This clarity is key to effective governance.

Regulatory Compliance: Additionally, the committee helps streamline regulatory processes and ensures compliance with local regulations, such as environmental norms and the K2 FORM in Karnataka, which includes managing noise levels, lighting, and other factors to maintain a safe and pleasant environment.

Quality standards: By setting standards for events, the cultural committee ensures a minimum quality of food and specifies what types of events are allowed or not allowed, such as prohibiting political mockery. This helps maintain the community’s values and expectations. Furthermore, the committee distributes work among its members and coordinates with the association, ensuring that events are planned and executed smoothly. This efficient mobilization of efforts is essential for the successful organization of large-scale events.

Marketing & Promotion: Lastly, the committee handles the marketing and promotion of events, ensuring that residents are well-informed and encouraged to participate, which boosts community engagement and participation.

Q2. Your society must have people following various cultures and religions. How do you ensure that your event calendar is inclusive and respectful of this diversity?

“To avoid any accusations of partiality, we have established a clear and transparent approach. We have decided that association funds will only be used for three key events: Independence Day, Republic Day, and Karnataka Rajyotsava.”

For these events, we organize flag-hoisting ceremonies, cultural programs, and food stalls, and we delegate the management to an independent committee to maintain transparency and community involvement.

For other festivals, we empower residents to celebrate independently. As long as these celebrations comply with local laws and society rules, there are no restrictions. This approach allows for a wide variety of festivals from different regions and religions to be celebrated. Residents are responsible for obtaining any necessary local compliance permissions and managing the organization of their events.

While the responsibility for these independent celebrations lies with the organizers, we support them by helping with marketing. We use our official channels and allow promotion on our society’s social media platforms to ensure that all residents are aware of upcoming events and can participate if they wish.

This system ensures that our event calendar remains inclusive and respectful of all cultural and religious practices while maintaining order and compliance with regulations.

Q3. Large events often generate a lot of waste. What measures do you take for effective waste management post-events to keep your society clean and green?

To manage waste effectively after large events and keep our society clean and green, we focus on education and sustainable practices. We have a well-managed waste management system in place, including partnerships with vendors who ensure proper waste disposal. We encourage event organizers to minimize waste generation by planning appropriately and avoiding over-purchasing.

“Any leftover items are distributed to our staff or others in need, ensuring nothing goes to waste.”

Q4. Bengaluru often faces water shortages. How do you plan and execute events during such times while being mindful of water conservation?

During water crises, such as the recent restrictions on using fresh water for swimming pools during Holi, we take proactive measures to conserve water. For example, we utilized rainwater harvested from the last month’s rains to fill our water tank. We also urged residents to avoid using fresh water for Holi, encouraging them to order water tankers if necessary rather than using society water. This year, we successfully promoted a dry Holi, emphasizing the importance of minimal water usage and environmental responsibility.

Q5. Do you collaborate with event management companies for organizing events? If so, how do they enhance the experience for everyone?

Our events are primarily managed by our resident teams, catering to our captive audience of 7,000 people. While we have successfully organized events without external event management companies, we do bring in outside performers for special acts like folk performance artists of Dolu Kunitha, Huli Vesha, Gombe Dance & sandalwood stars. Additionally, Mygate organizes various fairs and flea markets for which once the theme is decided, the Mygate team takes charge. This resident-led approach fosters a strong sense of community involvement and ownership.

Q6. Do you rely on sponsorships to fund your events? What strategies do you use to attract sponsors and ensure their involvement benefits the community?

We have chosen to disallow sponsorships for our events. Sponsorships often lead to excessive noise and visual clutter, with sponsors putting up video displays, and playing loud music, which we aim to avoid. Instead, we collect funds directly from our residents, who have consistently
supported our events generously. By discouraging sponsorships, we maintain control over the event environment and ensure a pleasant experience for all attendees.

Q7. Budgeting is crucial for organising successful events. How do you allocate your budget and ensure all events are well-funded and executed smoothly?

Budget cap: Our association sets a strict budget cap for each event. This helps us maintain control over expenses and ensures that events remain within reasonable limits.

Voluntary contributions: If additional funds are needed, such as for hiring performers or actors, residents can contribute voluntarily. Most residents are happy to support cultural events by donating or purchasing food coupons.

Strict guidelines & penalties: To prevent events from becoming too extravagant, we have established guidelines on how events should be managed and concluded, minimizing waste and debris. We also impose penalties for excessive debris to encourage compliance. This structured approach ensures that all events are well-funded, responsibly managed, and enjoyable for the entire community.

Q8. Can you share an anecdote or something that stands out as particularly memorable or heartwarming vis-a-vis events in your community?

There are several memorable moments from our events. We make it a point to recognize and appreciate our staff with cash rewards and encouragement. We also cherish the participation of senior citizens and even young children, aged 6-7, who perform during our events. These instances not only showcase the diverse talents within our community but also highlight the spirit of unity and support that defines our gatherings. Each event becomes a special occasion where every participant, regardless of age, feels valued and celebrated.

What do you think?