Just because it’s the season of giving doesn’t mean your nonprofit has to give up on its revenue streams. In fact, giving happens year-round, and so should your organization’s fundraising efforts.
This time of year is perfect for a Thanksgiving fundraising campaign or event, as you can capitalize on the charitable spirit of your donors, volunteers, and clients. These fundraisers are not just another community gathering but an opportunity to stand out from the competition and impact the lives of those you serve. Here are some ideas for leveraging the spirit of Thanksgiving for an influential fundraiser for your nonprofit this season.
Here are 8 Thanksgiving Fundraiser Ideas this 2023:
A Dinner To Benefit Your Cause
If you have a banquet or dining hall in your facility, you could host a dinner or banquet event to benefit your organization. You can advertise this as an elegant affair and ask for a small or nominal donation at the door.
Encourage guests to make a donation instead of bringing a gift (a gift to your cause). This would be ideal for an organization such as a food bank with limited community visibility.
A dinner event can bring a diverse group of people together and give you an opportunity to raise awareness about your organization’s mission. This is also great for engaging your executive leadership team and board members in fundraising efforts. You can invite them to host the event and set a sponsorship level for each table.
This gives your board members a direct way to get involved and engage with their networks.
A Big Donor Gala
You could host a big donor gala event if you have a large donor base. Invite your top donors and ask them to bring a guest. This is a great way to engage your top donors and get them excited about your work.
Plus, you can recognize and thank them for their contributions. If you don’t have a large donor base, you can look to engage newly developed relationships through your event.
This is a great way to reach out to new donors and engage them in your cause. You can include a recognition program (such as table recognition or program recognition) at the event and ask your guests to bring a friend.
The Giving Feast
If you are a food bank or food pantry, you can host a giving feast. This is a great way to engage your volunteers and create additional opportunities for your clients to engage in your organization.
You can also host this event to engage new donors and raise awareness in your community about the hunger issues that your organization serves.
A service fair
You can host a service fair event if you provide a service to your community. This is a great way to engage your volunteers in fundraising efforts and engage people in your cause.
Host this event in your facility, at a local park, or a shopping center parking lot. This is a great way to engage your volunteers and clients and get them out into the community.
You can get local businesses involved by hosting a service fair where community members can sign up for one of the services offered.
The business could also offer a discount for people who come by to sign up for the service.
Meal based fundraiser
If you provide meals or food to your clients or have a food bank as part of your organization, you can host a meal-based fundraiser. You can host this event at your facility or invite guests to bring packaged meals to donate.
Partner with a local restaurant or food establishment to host a meal-based fundraiser event. Ask them to donate a portion of the proceeds or a percentage of the meals served. You can host this event at the restaurant or invite guests to bring meals to drop off at your organization.
A Running Event To Benefit Your Cause
If you have a fitness program or run a fitness program at your organization, you could host a charity run. You can invite your fitness participants to run a distance and donate a portion of their registration to your cause. You can host the charity run as a fun run, 5k or 10k.
This is a great way to engage the fitness community in your cause. You can even host the event at your facility or an outdoor location. It is also a great way to engage your volunteers in fundraising efforts and engage people in your cause.
An Adoption Fair Or Co-Op Fundraiser
If you’re a pet shelter, you could host an adoption fair or co-op fundraiser. You can partner with local organizations and businesses and host an adoption fair that includes other pet shelters.
You can charge each organization a fee to host a table at the fair. You can also partner with other pet organizations and provide services such as grooming, vet visits, and training. Charge a service fee and donate a percentage of the proceeds to your organization. This is a great way to engage the pet community in your cause and bring additional exposure and adoptions to your shelter.
A Bake Sale Or Food Festival
If you provide a meal program or food bank, or you have a commercial kitchen that bakes for organizations, you can host a bake sale or food festival event. This is a great way to engage your volunteers and community members in fundraising efforts.
You can also partner with local restaurants, bakeries, and food establishments to host a food festival. Ask them to donate a portion of the proceeds to your organization. You can host this event at your facility or invite guests to bring packaged meals to drop off at your organization.
Fundraising is an essential component of a nonprofit’s operations. The ability to raise funds from various sources helps a nonprofit meet its mission by providing an alternative source of support beyond government funding.
This year, consider hosting a fundraiser that capitalizes on the spirit of giving on Thanksgiving that comes with the holiday season. From gala events to fun runs and everything in between, there are various ways to raise funds for your nonprofit and impact the lives of those you serve.