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Fundraising Event Ideas

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Fundraising events can be an impactful way to increase annual donations. However, they also are costly and take a great deal of staff time. Consider how your fundraising event can also serve as a tool to connect to potential or lapsed donors, share your organization’s message to a broader audience, and integrate into your core programs to build impact and raise funds at the same time. Here are a few examples of fundraising events:

Charity Walks/Runs:

Charity walks and runs are a popular choice for nonprofits, as they offer a fun, healthy way for people to support a good cause. Participants are encouraged to fundraise before the event, and then come together on the day to walk or run the course. Some events offer additional entertainment, such as live music or food vendors, to make the day even more enjoyable for participants and spectators alike.

Art Auctions:

Art auctions are a great way to raise money for nonprofit arts organizations. The event can be held online or in person, and typically features works donated by local artists or collectors. Guests can bid on the artwork, with the proceeds going directly to the nonprofit. To make the event even more engaging, some organizations host cocktail parties or dinners alongside the auction, giving donors an opportunity to connect with like-minded art lovers.

Gala Dinners:

Gala dinners are a classic fundraising event, and for good reason. They offer an elegant, high-end experience that can help attract major donors and sponsors. Many nonprofits host gala dinners as an annual fundraiser, with guests purchasing tickets or tables to attend. The event can include a cocktail reception, silent auction, and live entertainment, as well as an opportunity to hear from speakers about the organization’s impact.

Charity Concerts:

Music events are a popular choice for nonprofits looking to raise funds and awareness. Charity concerts can take many forms, from large-scale outdoor festivals to intimate acoustic sets in small venues. Some events feature multiple performers, while others focus on a single artist or band. Whatever the format, charity concerts offer a unique opportunity to bring people together around a shared love of music, while also supporting a good cause.

Themed Fundraisers:

Themed fundraisers can be a fun and creative way to engage supporters and raise money for your nonprofit. Examples of themed fundraisers include “Dancing with the Stars”-style dance competitions, “Jeopardy”-style trivia nights, and “Top Chef”-style cooking competitions. The key is to choose a theme that resonates with your donors and supporters, and to create an experience that is both fun and rewarding.

Sporting Events:

Sporting events can be a great way to engage donors who are passionate about sports. Examples of successful sporting fundraisers include charity golf tournaments, basketball shootouts, and soccer tournaments. By tapping into the enthusiasm that many people have for sports, nonprofits can create an event that is both enjoyable and effective at raising funds.

Online Fundraisers:

In recent years, online fundraisers have become increasingly popular. Crowdfunding platforms like GoFundMe and Kickstarter have made it easy for nonprofits to raise funds from supporters around the world. Online fundraisers can take many forms, from social media campaigns to virtual auctions. The key is to create a compelling story that resonates with donors and to make it easy for them to contribute. These are a great way to share a message and raise funds from new small donors.

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