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Nonprofit Fundraising 101 by Darian Rodriguez Heyman

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Chapter 12 Event-Based Fundraising

“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”

—Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Introduction

In today’s digital age, much of our fundraising and relationship-building happens through technology. It is becoming less common for fundraisers to have personal interactions with donors, but these are still critical when raising funds and developing connections. Events are an important way to engage with donors and create an experience that not only brings awareness to your cause, but also inspires a sense of community among supporters and generates much-needed funds. They’re also an important way to engage with Millennials and younger audiences. Eventbrite found that over 75 percent of the Millennials they surveyed would rather spend money on a desirable experience—such as an event—versus simply donating, and over two-thirds said events make them feel more connected to a cause. It’s crucial that your nonprofit effectively engage your next generation of donors, and events are one key to doing this.

Events require a significant amount of time and effort and aren’t often an organization’s primary source of funding. However, when done right the benefits you reap with a successful event far outweigh the resources you invest in it. Events can play a key part in cultivation and stewardship strategies, making critical differences in your efforts with major donors, foundations, and important allies like partners and ...

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