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How to Entertain at a Non-Profit Fundraiser

By Charles Hopkins Published 07/6/2006 | Entertainment

A non-profit fundraising event is very important. However, since people are likely spending their hard-earned money on the event, it is a good idea for you to provide some appropriate entertainment. The problem is that you dont want to break the bank doing it and eat into the money you are raising in the first place. So what do you do? Here are a few tips on how to entertain at a non-profit fundraiser.

Ask First:

Before you think about anything else, contact entertainers to see if you can get time donated. You are running a non-profit fundraiser here, so if you appeal to their since of giving back you can possibly get high level entertainment for little or no money. The thing is, you will never know if you dont ask. Contact local bands, local celebrities who may want to speak, or even novelty acts like magicians and other performers. If your non-profit is a 501(c)3, you can let them know that it will count as a gift-in-kind, which is tax deductible.

If you can get time donated by high-level talent, then you have gotten your entertainment. However, you may run into a situation where everyone is booked or doesnt want to work for free. That is where the next tip comes in.

Find Talent Within the Organization:

One way to entertain is to have someone from the organization you are raising money for speak at the event. If you are lucky enough to have a dynamic and entertaining speaker or performer in your organization, then you have an invaluable resource. Take advantage of it. Ask around and keep your eyes open. As you know, the more you can get from within, the more money you will make with your fundraiser.

Make the Fundraiser the Entertainment:

Depending on what type of non-profit organization you are working for, you can actually make the event the entertainment. If you hold a fund-raising carnival, three on three basketball tournament, or even a race, you will be entertaining while raising money for your non-profit. Just make sure that this type of fundraiser is appropriate to the non-profit for which you are raising money.

Do the Little Things

In the case of a non-profit fundraiser, you will find that the little things will go a long way. Use your volunteers to make sure guests are well taken care of. If you are doing a fundraising dinner, then try making sure that the volunteers are giving the best of service. Sometimes, it really is the little things that count. Remember that these little things will secure repeat donors in the future.

A non-profit fundraiser represents the opportunity to raise the money needed so that your non-profit organization can do its thing. However, when you are working to raise money and not just to make a thin margin, it can be difficult to offer guests the entertainment they may be looking for in exchanged for their donation. However, it can be done if you just take into account a few strategies. Make sure you ask for donated time and talents, look within your organization for help, make the event the entertainment, and try to do the little things to help your event shine.