In the past 18 months events have become a tricky thing to organise or attend, wouldn’t you agree? We have seen many live events cancelled or postponed. Others proceeded but had to limit the number of attendees, take into consideration social distancing and introduce contact tracing. Some events were completely reformatted and took place online. So, if there is one thing we know for certain is that the way we approach events now has changed dramatically. That’s why we are dedicating our new series of blog articles to all things event organising.
The first question to answer is, Is it even worth it to try and attend or conduct events in the world of continuous COVID outbreaks and lockdowns that follow?
Our answer is YES! When we think about nonprofits, it becomes obvious that they rely greatly on events and the role those play in their growth. This is where you meet people (experts in your sector, prospective donors and supporters, or even future volunteers) and make friends, learn about new trends and developments, and ultimately get inspired.
In today’s post we’ll discuss the main types of events you should organise or get involved in to propel your growth and strengthen your ties with the community. Usually, there are four main goals to attending or conducting events: education, networking, fundraising, and serving your community. Let’s look at them in more detail:
Constantly educating ourselves is important, and in the charity sector there are so many amazing people to learn from. Many nonprofit industry leaders or stand-out charity CEOs often speak at different events and share how they got their organisations started, what challenges they faced, and how they reached the top. Follow the path of successful leaders and changemakers before you – their stories and examples will expand your horizons and keep you ignited.
Some of the most interesting topics in the past months have included nonprofit leadership, governance and strategy; diversity, equity and inclusivity in a workplace; or personal health, wellbeing and cultivating a positive attitude for the times when you don’t feel like you want to keep going.
Attending conferences, lectures or workshops are a great way to not only learn something new, but also feel inspired, gain a different perspective and explore any direction you want to grow in.
These are a fantastic opportunity to grow your reach and educate more people about your organisation, its cause and mission, and even your needs. Another benefit is meeting people and learning about other organisations that can result in future partnerships or collaborations, such as joint fundraisers. If you are a charity offering support to people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families, it might be good to establish connections with other charities working in the health sector and see how you can work together for the benefit of your community. If you are an environmental group that seeks to plant more trees in your city, you might find it helpful to connect with community gardens. Opportunities are endless, and collaborations do not necessarily need to happen between organisations working in the same sector.
Fundraising events are vital for most charities, being one of main ways they are able to increase their revenue and at the same time raise the awareness of their mission. The great thing about fundraising events is that there are multiple types of those! They can include sporting events (fun runs, walks, and games), cultural events (art exhibitions and concerts), entertainment (auctions, galas, dance parties, plays and performances) and more.
You can always find something that would work for your type of organisation, and if you throw a bit of creativity into preparation, they can become a much loved and anticipated periodic event in your community.
It seems that now more than ever charities need to be there to offer help and support to their communities. Soup kitchens for the needy, crafts workshops or clubs for young mums, tea parties for the elderly people, summer camps with games and competitions for children of all ages – again, possibilities are nearly endless. Unlike fundraising events, they are focused on your customers, not your donors, but many of these can overlap if you invite your donors to an exhibit of paintings done by the children your charity takes care of, or quilts designed by your elderly community, it can be a win-win.
In conclusion, for nonprofits, events are of great importance, and we hope that despite the unforeseen changes in the event sector, you are still excited to attend or organise your own events. To help you with that, in our next article we’ll look into event planning and even provide you with a checklist that will help you make sure nothing falls through the cracks and your event turns out to be a huge success!
Would you like to find out more about infoodle CRM and our Events Package? Watch a demo on demand or contact our product experts!