It’s the season for parties once again, and you’re probably dealing with invitations left and right. But if you’re the one in charge of planning a party, you know all too well that it can be a challenging endeavour. There’s no need to worry just yet, however – especially if your party is a charity fundraising event. There’s a right way to do it so you don’t end up with an impossible headache on your hands. Here are some top tips to planning and preparing for the party of the century – your very own fundraising event.
Establish your purpose
The first step is to establish the purpose of your fundraising event. Is it for a person, or is it for an institution, political party, or special charity? Although these kinds of events are usually formal, you can decide to have an informal event – it’s really up to you. What about presentations and speeches? Are you planning to have special speakers? Focus on the cause of your event and what the funds will be for.
And whilst raising funds may be your primary purpose, you may have an additional purpose as well, such as raising awareness for a cause, networking with key influencers and donors, and seeking coverage from the media. Establish the purpose, and you’re on your way.
To be more organised, it’s best to have tickets. This way, you can keep track of the number of participants and know if the venue you are planning to book can hold the number of attendees. And, of course, if you know how many are coming, you can already make an estimate of how much funds you can gather – and how much you would need to spend.
You need to determine your budget. Keep a careful eye on your budget; you can do this more easily by making a spreadsheet. Always keep a record of all your expenses, big or small. One more tip: even if you have a budget, it doesn’t hurt to add about 5% or 10% to it as a contingency measure in case of sundry expenses. For instance, you may want to have a banner or two to promote and add more fun to your event; there are many banner printing services out there with competitive pricing from experienced banner printers.
The theme and venue
You may also want to think of a theme – and themes are definitely plentiful, ranging from a wine tasting event to a dance party, casino night, a film party, or even a craft beer brewfest. The possibilities are endless. The venue should also match your party’s theme, and don’t forget to think of logistical requirements such as available space for chairs and tables, a stage, AV equipment, etc., deposit requirements and cancellation policies, acoustics, and climate control. Good luck, and have fun!