How to plan your fundraising event

If you planned your wedding, you can plan a large fundraiser. And guess what?  This time it's so inexpensive!

One annual large event for a family can raise anywhere from $10,000-$150,000 USD in typical markets. If you're based out of any of the big cities, you can bring in so much more! 

Go check out venues in your area that host weddings, and come armed with a name for your charity event. You'll want to target expenditures from ticket sales of around 10% of what you want to raise. Expect that in your first year, this percentage will be higher. Make sure you subtract the fees associated with the event (venue fees, food, alcohol, staffing, etc.) when you plan for your goal. Remember, the tickets will pay for the event. But, the better deal you negotiate or the more you have donated, will mean more goes to the critical research!

You can expect fundraising to come in from ticket sales, auction items, and private sponsorships. Just like a wedding, you can take up to a year to plan a great event. 

Here are some tips:

1. Short and sweet is great! A 3-hour event is perfect

2. Venues are cheaper on Thursday evenings as compared to the weekend. Thursdays are the new Fridays, so give it a go!

3. Start securing donated auction items now. Some popular ideas are experiences (tickets to a show, for example), original art, sunglasses, handbags, vacations, and more!  

4. Ask a realistic ticket price. This is where you can expect to raise about half of your funds. You'd be surprised what your network will pay to attend when they know that we're so close to a treatment.  

5. Don't sweat the details and take away from fundraising with unnecessary expenditures. Food and drinks are key. Other than that, the rest can be minimal. Pick a space that doesn't need much decorating and let it speak for itself. No need to monogram candy either!  

The 401 Project is here to help! Contact us at for your event planning.