Planning, organizing, and running a fundraising event can be a great way to bring a community of people together in support of a good cause, but it can also be time consuming and overwhelming. Besides putting on a great party, you’ll be responsible for making sure it’s also a profitable one. The success of your fundraising event will require careful planning and preparation. Follow these tips for throwing a successful (and fun) event!

To ensure that you’ve covered all your bases, make sure your event plan incorporates the following critical components.


Before you begin any planning for your fundraising event, make sure you have clearly defined the event’s purpose. Besides fundraising, do you hope to accomplish any other goals? Some examples include raising awareness and publicity, reaching out to another organization or network, or recognizing individuals or groups for their efforts.


Before you plan a guest list, you should determine how much money you hope to raise at the event. Consider how big the event will be, who will be invited, any key donors you expect, and make sure you factor in the cost of throwing the event. Everything you plan moving forward will be with the intention of raising this amount of money.


Every fundraising event plan should have a complete budget prepared. This includes all the expenses related to the event; including hired staff, event rentals (like tents, tableware, linens, and lighting), catering, and entertainment. The budget should also include your fundraising goal amount, which will need to be attainable after paying all expenses. Always leave room in your budget for unforeseen expenses.


Will you rent an indoor space, or host the fundraising event outdoors, using a tent to define your event’s space? Also consider essentials like tables, chairs, flatware, dishes, and glassware. Finishing touches, like linens, lighting, and a stage and/or dance floor can create an elegant and functional space for your fundraising event.


Make sure to determine who will be your target audience – will this event be open to the public, or will it be invitation-only? Also consider putting together a “host committee,” which is made up of people who are responsible for contributing substantial amounts to the event, and who will encourage others to do the same. Consider local business owners, wealthy donors with an interest in the benefitting organization, or local celebrities.

Food and Entertainment

Will you hire a caterer, or host the event at a location that provides food? Additionally, how will you entertain attendees? A live band, a DJ, or games? Or will your event be an auction? Sort out these details to ensure everyone who attends has a memorable and entertaining evening.


In order to convince your target audience to attend (and bring their wallets), you’ll need to make sure they know about the event, and are looking forward to it. Consider avenues like mailed invites, phone calls, word of mouth, and your host committee.

Don’t Forget – Send Thank You’s for Your Fundraiser Event!

It is critical that you send thank you notes to all of your donors and volunteers when the event is over. You’ll likely be asking for more contributions down the road, so make sure your donors and volunteers know how much you appreciate their attendance and contributions!

Get some inspiration for your next fundraising event! This private school fundraiser was elegantly put together, while this sophisticated university fundraiser event adds interest with color and lighting elements. Contact Party Savvy today to learn more about how we can make your fundraising vision come to life!

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