Fundraising Event Case Study

Fundraising Event Case Study

Organising a Fundraising Event

Case study of a successful fundraising event by Karen Goodridge

‘Safari Supper’

Before the event

  • Pray.
  • Get a team together to take on the tasks. (Don’t do everything yourself!)
  • Decide what the event is raising money for (eg. To pay towards a Wheels trip or a DCF Holiday).
  • Decide on a date.
  • Ask 2 or 3 friends to host, one for main course, one for dessert and one for coffee. You may, of course be one of the hosts! The idea is to have three courses at three separate venues and travel to each of them.
  • Decide on a speaker (either contact TTR to ask for a speaker, or someone you know who has either been on a Wheels Trip or DCF Holiday or Integr8 Project).
  • Decide how many people you would like to invite. (Work out your break-even point).
  • Decide on a menu.  (It could be themed eg. Indian or Chinese or individual hosts could make their own choices)
  • Decide on who will provide the food (it does not necessarily have to be the same person who is hosting).
  • Decide on the cost of the ticket.  (Some hosts/meal providers may wish to claim for their expenses incurred, so you will need to take this into consideration when deciding on the cost of ticket).
  • Design and produce invitations and flyers/posters with details of when and where.  Make them colourful.  You may wish to invite specific people, or open it up to anyone. (see example)
  • If you decide to open the evening up to anyone, advertise in your local church magazine, or other organisations you are involved in (eg. Schools, Women’s or Men’s groups). 
  • Add an RSVP date to the invitation or flyer with contact details.
  • If the venues are far apart, you may wish to provide transport for those who don’t have their own.
  • Design and produce numbered tickets.  You may wish to have one point of contact or more.  If more, give an equal number of tickets to each.
  • Send out invitations (by hand if possible to save on postage)
  • Keep a list of replies.
  • Collect raffle prizes (6 or more good quality items eg.  box of chocolates, toiletry set, stationery set, bottle of wine).  Buy a book of raffle tickets.
  • You could visit local shops with a leaflet of the charity asking them whether they would consider donating a prize.  Explain what you are doing and when the event is taking place etc.  A local greengrocers may agree to give you a fruit basket, or a local wine shop may give you a bottle!  Ask to put up a poster, if the event is advertised wider.
  • You could write to local attractions, again explaining about the event, enclose a leaflet and a stamped addressed envelope, asking for a ticket donation for your raffle.
  • Remember to write and thank anyone who gives you a donation.
  • Contact the local newspaper about your event.  They may send a photographer.
  • Ask your local church/group if they would advertise your event before the service/meeting.
  • Ask TTR for up-to-date literature to display at the event together with a donation box.  Give a supply of leaflets to each host.
  • Ask TTR for the latest dvd to show at the event.
  • You may wish to borrow a display board from TTR or you could make your own pin-board with leaflets, photos etc.
  • Decide at which venue you will show the dvd and have the talk (probably at the last house).
  • Ask your speaker if they have any photos to display.
  • Make sure each host has enough crockery, cutlery, glasses, chairs etc.
  • Ask someone to be in charge of selling the raffle tickets on the evening.  Decide on how much you will charge for tickets (ie. £1 per strip)
  • Provide a box to collect raffle tickets.
  • Design and print a menu.  (see example)

On the day of the event

  • Contact all your hosts to make sure all is well.
  • Make sure the dvd is working!
  • Set up the display and literature.
  • Display the raffle prizes.
  • Appoint someone to serve drinks.
  • Appoint people to wash up.

At the Event

  • Welcome guests as they arrive.
  • Serve drinks.
  • When everyone has arrived say a brief ‘welcome’ and explain how the evening will work.
  • Start selling raffle tickets once everyone has settled in. (Remember to take raffle tickets to each venue and raffle prizes to last venue).
  • Enjoy the meal together!
  • When about to leave for the second venue, telephone the host to let them know you are on your way.
  • Enjoy the Dessert
  • Take photos.
  • Move to the final venue.
  • While serving coffee, show the DVD.
  • Introduce speaker and thank everyone for coming.
  • Listen to the talk.
  • Thank the speaker.
  • Draw the raffle.
  • Ask people to write their names and addresses if they would like to be added to the supporters list.
  • Encourage others to consider holding their own event – offer them a dvd if they would like one.
  • Leave the donations box near the door as everyone leaves.
  • Encourage people to Gift Aid any donations. (Gift Aid forms available from TTR)

After the Event

  • Count proceeds.
  • Pay any expenses.
  • Write to thank people who helped in any way
  • Write to thank those who made specific donations.
  • Send proceeds to TTR – if you are able, it is best to bank the cash and write a cheque to TTR.  Explain in letter what the event was and what the money was being raised for.
  • Keep copies of all correspondence.
  • Add any names and addresses to the supporters list.
  • Document the financial transactions.
  • Write an article about the event for local paper/church magazine/website etc. and include photos