One of the first steps when planning your organization’s charity auction is to select a theme. The possibilities are truly endless. Charity Fundraising has developed this helpful checklist of items to consider as you select a theme for your upcoming charity auction.

1.) Revisit Who You Are:  You may live and breathe the mission of your organization each and every day, but that doesn't mean all of your guests do.  Remember that your current donors may          be  inviting guests that are new to your work and your cause. Before selecting a theme, re-read your mission statement, take a moment to look at your corporate imagery and themes.  Your event theme should be fresh but certainly shouldn't stray from your organization’s mission and corporate imagery.

2.) Think About Your Guests:  If the majority of your guests are over the age of 50 and business professionals attending a gala event, you will want to theme your auction in a very different way than a school fundraiser attended by students and parents. Do your best to make sure that the majority of your guests will find comfort in your theme.  After all, hiring a rock band when you should have a string quartet for your entertainment could be a devastating mistake at your event.

3.) Select a theme that is within your budget: Attempting to host a four course meal in the grand ballroom at the fanciest hotel in town is probably not the wisest venue for a small fundraiser for a school or civic group.  Remember the goal of your event is to raise money for your cause.  Don’t spend your entire annual budget on one evening.

Your fundraising committee has worked hard to select the perfect theme.  Be sure to incorporate the theme into every detail of your event.  Invitations, your webpage, decorations, music, food and beverage and even your charity auction items can reflect the theme of your event and your cause.

For example, The Arts and Science Center of Southeast Arkansas hosted a charity auction event with a southern hospitality theme.  They complimented the theme by hosting a southern style buffet and selecting a collection of charity auction items featuring autographed items from musicians and stars from the south. Little touches and details will get noticed by your guests and make the event extra special.

If you would like assistance from Charity Fundraising when planning your next live or silent auction, we’d love to help.  For more assistance in planning your upcoming charity auction,  contact Charity Fundraising today!