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How to plan a brilliant charity event

10 key things to consider when planning your fundraiser

Panoramic view of an outdoor charity event

If you’re new to event organisation, holding a fundraising event can be anxiety-inducing as there can be so many aspects to consider and get right.

We’ve selected our top ten tips to help you get it right first time, leaving your supporters engaged and your fundraising target well on its way to being met.

Five things to do…

1. Have a clear objective

If you don’t know what you’re trying to achieve, your event guests won’t either. Make the fundraising objective straightforward and let your guests know exactly what to expect at the event.

2. Budget the event carefully

It defeats the point if you lose money at your event due to poor planning. Make a budget and make sure you stick to it.

3. Figure out your target audience

Think carefully about who you’re going to invite to your event. Will it be open to everybody, or will you look for specific people or groups with a connection to your charity?

4. Hire carefully

You’ll need outside help to make your event a success, but there’s a risk when you delegate – will your poor choice of caterer, for example, leave your guests with an unpleasant taste in their mouths?

5. Ensure your guests are safe

Conducting a health and safety risk assessment isn’t many people’s idea of a good time, but as the organiser you have a responsibility to ensure you’re not putting guests in harm’s way.

…and five things not to do

1. Don’t choose the wrong venue

Are you certain the indoor public swimming pool is the right spot for your charity barbecue?

2. Don’t leave things to the last minute

Putting on a great fundraising event takes longer than you might think, so give yourself plenty of time and don’t leave everything until the last minute. People can tell when things have been rushed.

3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

You don’t have to do it all on your own – and unless you’re the Leonardo da Vinci of events you probably shouldn’t attempt to. You’ll be surprised how many people will want to offer a helping hand.

4. Don’t be shy about upselling

You’re raising money for a great cause so it’s fine to encourage guests to donate a little more money. Sell merchandise, hold a raffle or ask people to sign up to direct debits for your charity.

5. Don’t forget to say thank you

Your guests and helpers have been lovely, generous and kind. Let them know you appreciate it.

You may also be interested in our article, How to hold a successful charity event, which includes more tips from charities who have held successful events.

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