Not uncommon for family and corporate foundation to limit grants to organization located in regions, state, city or towns where they do business. What activities the funder will and will not fund – Fund tutoring, scholarships, construction, funding categories, populations
IRS Form 990 – How foundation distribute funds – Who, Size, duration Get copy of 990 by contacting IRS, directly form the public charity or Internet databases such as Guidestar (www.guidestar.org)
Letter of Intent or Inquiry Often foundation and cooperation request a letter of intent to screen out projects that do not meet their funding guidelines and avoid length proposal writing. Funder may also want to preselect projects in which it has an interest and request full proposals Letters of Intent are brief and should be written on letterhead
Special Events Workshop October 2012
Special Events 101
The Big QuestionSpecial Events are an easy way to raise operating funds. True or False? Story time
Agenda Key Criteria of a Special Event Why Special Events Fail Choosing the Right Special Event Planning a Special Event Budget Special Event Timeline Determining Success After the Event
A Successful Special Event Is carefully planned Makes use of a strong committee Reaches its target audience Sells the right amount of advance tickets Meets its goals and objectives Raises significant dollars Promotes positive and timely follow-up
Why do Special Events Fail? There are 3 primary pitfalls1. Belief that a SE is can or should be you biggest source of operating income2. Too little return for the amount effort—did you budget for staff time?3. Misuse of volunteers Burning them out Not giving them ownership Not expressing appreciation
Failure SpecificsDid not raise enough incomeDid not attract new donorsDiverted attention from other fundraising effortsLack of clearly defined roles-staff and vols.Inadequate sponsorshipInadequate advance ticket sales
Choosing the Right EventHave we examined all the options?Do we have the time, talent and resources?Have we set an appropriate $ goal?Have we explored what others have done?Does our SE reflect age, giving capacity of my target participant?Does the theme fit my mission?
Ask yourselfWould I hold a golf tournament if I run a theatre company committed to bringing the arts to lower income kids? Would my donors be interested in that?
Consider these Elements A suitable and affordable venue Add-ons; auctions, awards, celebrity, sig. cocktail? Additional “asks” Realistic budget Publicity and promotion Risk and Liability Sponsorship How many similar events are happening?
Planning a Special EventYou Need A qualified, dedicated event chair An abundance of volunteers An active, dedicated and supportive Board Ample to accomplish all the tasks A good mailing/prospect list Enough sponsors and supporters A degree of community recognition
Where and WhenWhere? Should be logically connected to your organization Should be easily accessible Should match the mood of the event Should fit your budgetWhen? Is there a time that works best for your organization? What else is going on at that time of year? Are your volunteers available when you need them? Have you provided enough planning time?
Budget Determine what portion of your ops budget will be covered by the event Factor in: STAFF TIME Venue rental Equipment (AV, chairs, etc.) Services (catering, transport. Security, etc.) Entertainment Publications/Publicity Decorations Recognition
Budget con’t. Ask yourself if you can get any of the above for Free!! Income Ticket sales Sponsorship In-Kind Additional $ contributions Memberships Auction Item sales Swag sales
Timeline for a July Event August – select cmte., speaker(s), set mtg. schedule September – assign tasks, contact speaker, choose venue, equipment, permits, insurance, security October – draft event agenda in 15-30 min. increments November – identify potential sponsors December – ID target participants and begin sponsorship discussions January – ID caterer and entertainment
Timeline con’t. February – approve menu, select music March – print invitations, flyers, tickets. Finalize publicity plan April – BIG CHECKIN MTG. On track? Issues? May – start publicity, meet with volunteers, send invitations (last week of the month) June – Coordinate all elements – do run through and talk to all vendors July – Event and Followup
Determining SuccessQuestions to ask after the event is over Did we make enough money? Were the tickets priced right? Were enough tickets pre-sold? Was our target market well-defined? Will the event promote future community involvement? Was the event well-planned executed?
Questions Did the special event interfere with other fundraising efforts? Did we attract good sponsorship? Was our event cmte. Chair effective? Was the staff/volunteers effective? Was the board supportive of our efforts? Did we give ourselves enough time? Was our mailing list sufficient?
Questions Evaluate and analyze any mistakes that you have made Keep this report on file. It is important historical data
After the Event Hold an assessment meeting to discuss the previous questions Acknowledge donors and sponsors within 2 weeks Big donors/sponsors should receive personal thanks – phone calls or in person Tell your donors/sponsors what their money will support Include any press received Provide feedback to those who could not attend