Organizing a charity event is like preparing to climb a mountain. If you just show up on the day of the climb, chances are you’ll never make it to the top. On the other hand, if you took the time to prepare physically and get your body in good shape for the task ahead, you’re likely to sail through just fine. (Just in case, be ready with the best pain relief for tension headaches)
Often, this preparation is critical and takes many months, sometimes a year or more. With charity event organization, the preparation may not take as long, but it is just as crucial. Follow these steps on how to organize a charity event that meets your goals for the event.
Why are you holding the event? Be clear about the purpose of your event. Do you want to raise funds or increase your organization’s publicity? Are you hoping to attract new partnerships or sign up a mass of volunteers? You may have one goal, or you may wish to achieve two or more goals. Whatever it is, having a clear definition of the goal allows you to make concrete plans and take specific steps towards its actualization.
The next step is to identify your target for the event. Is it open to the general public or a specific segment of people only? Are they individuals, corporate entities, or both? Pick your audience with the event goal in mind, knowing these are the people who will help you meet your goals.
Remember how we said you must be clear about the purpose of the event? This is why: You’ll have to communicate this to the people you’re targeting and inviting. Why should they care about your event? Because it aims to do 123 for XYZ. Few people will respond to a charity event invitation where the purpose of the event is vague. The average supporter/donor/contributor likes to know their donation is being put to good use.
You have a plan for the event and a why. You also know who to invite to the event. Next, work on the budget for the event. Include all expenses you can think of. You may find that it helps to come up with an event line-up, listing how the day will begin and progress till the event is over. List the expenses associated with each step so that nothing is unintentionally left out.
Transportation, public address systems, audiovisual equipment, catering, invitations, utilities, advertising, venue fees. No expense is too small to account for.
Your campaign team should now get ready to publicize the event, come up with creatives to market the event and begin sending out the invitations. Many local companies and even individuals are willing to chip in and help with the budget. Reach out to specific companies or simply create a web page for the event, with links and contact info where people who want to support you can reach you. Through this, you’ll likely get businesses to sponsor the venue, seating, catering and more.
Make it easy for people to send their donations when they cannot make it to the event. Have more than one donation channel or payment option. Create shareable promo content on your website and social media pages for your web visitors/followers to share with their contacts. And when the day of the event is here, you’ll be rearing to go like that mountain-climber who took his time to prepare his body for the long climb.
When you’re finally at the apex, reflecting on what a great run the event was, remember to send your supporters thank-you notes, and favors where applicable, for they’re the ones who made your event a success.