How to throw a Fund-Raiser of any scale:

You don’t have to be a professional philanthropist, celebrity or millionaire to throw a beautiful, successful fund-raiser.

In the summer season of Saturdays there are plenty of opportunities for throwing parties! For my entertainers out there, why not create an unforgettable event benefitting one of your favorite causes?

Here are some tips tailored to the smaller scale, outlined borrowed by philanthropy.com:

Find a committee: Choose people you trust, and people who care about the cause. You may be the chief planner, but without capable and responsible co-planners, the event will not be as beautiful or successful as it could be.

Choose an event: Remember the mission! Keep it related. Raising money for education? Why not hold a spelling bee. Raising money for hunger? Disaster relief? Try a food-drive, clothing collection, or country-themed evening.

Weigh costs against earnings: Remember: how much are you willing to loose? If your attendees are not as participatory as you had hoped.

Budget carefully: This is no time to spend outside of your means. Try throwing a shared event, and split the costs between friends. Here are some tips for throwing a big event on a small budget from http://www.moneycrashers.com/throw-party-budget-host/.

Reserve a location: Now, here is a wonderful place to make it personal, but also save money. Try your home or that of a friend, a park, or make this an area to ask for a company, museum, restaurant, bar or other venue to support your cause and donate the space for your event. Ask confidently, and offer incentive. Many locations are more than willing to have a hand in a charitable cause, and appreciate the publicity as well.

Delegate intelligently: This comes down, again, to your committee. Micro-management is the fast lane to insanity! Consider delegating the invitations/thank-yous, decorations, food, drink, entertainment and donations to separate parties- keep the stress down and quality up!

Consider sponsorships: If you want to be the most resourceful, think specifically donors for food, entertainment, locations, etc. Consider requesting a photographer, or a friend with an artsy eye to take and sell photos for donations from the event-or include them in your thank-yous to create a longer lasting memory for your guests.

Spread the word: For a more intimate gathering, keep in mind the ambiance that you want to create. The guest list for a ‘ladies who lunch’ event will look very different than for that of an art show or pool party. That said, when throwing a larger event- forget no one! This is a wonderful time to be all-inclusive and get back in touch with old friends, co-workers, and members of your outer circle.

  1. Encourage your friends bring more friends,
  2. Require (insist, suggest, etc) that members of your committee invite their circles as well.
  3. For an event where entry will be charged, try an online resource like eventbrite.com to manage RSVPs, and use free e-invitations from a site like paperlesspost.com.

Expect the unexpected: Be prepared! Fail to plan, plan to fail… all of the clichés you can think of, keep ‘em in mind and plan for the worst while hoping for the best! Weather related, not enough food or drink, power outage, entertainment doesn’t show up? Be ready for all of it. And inform the committee.

Remember the missions: Keep your goals in site, and don’t let the challenges in logistics dull the mood of anyone.

Give thanks– remember to send out thank yous and have everyone involved end up feeling the success of your event.

Lastly, enjoy and learn from this year so you can do it even better next time! Annual events become the most anticipated of the season.

Good luck!

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