Fundraising Special Events Report: Raising Money and Awareness
Fundraising special events, whether they be galas, dinners, sports tournaments or small gatherings, are a staple of a large number of development departments. Obviously, the goal of any fundraising event is to raise money for a worthy cause. However, according to the recently released 2014 Special Events Report from the Association of Fundraising Professionals, raising awareness and education is also an important goal of fundraising events.
For the report, the AFP conducted two focus groups with five to seven fundraising events specialists each as well as an online survey to AFP members in the U.S. and Canada. The findings are the result of those two focus groups and the 101 respondents to the survey. And while awareness and education are cited as important goals for fundraising special events, respondents report that the most important measure of success for a fundraising event is whether or not the event meets the budget goal. Acquiring new donors, prospects and volunteers is second.
Here are some more findings from the report:
- The number of events for respondents' organizations range from one or two a year all the way to 50 or more a year. Stewardship and fundraising receptions are the most common events, followed by auction galas and then sports tournaments and "a-thon" events.
- The majority of respondents do not have full-time staff devoted to event management.
- More than half of respondents report gross revenue of $100,000 ore more per year from special events, but only 12 percent report that event revenue accounts for 50 percent or more of annual organizational revenue.
- Most respondents use volunteers and staff, professional event-planning colleagues, and websites of other nonprofits holding events as the most common resources for event planning.
- Volunteers are vital for events, as is selecting the right volunteers.
- Technology is also vital for events.
For more information on fundraising special events, download the report here.