Allison Gauss
2 min
nonprofits event planner

12 Moments Every Nonprofit Event Planner Understands [GIFs]

Nonprofit events are an important way for organizations to fundraise, build relationships, and increase awareness. Whether it’s a 5K run/walk, a benefit concert, or your annual gala, planning and executing an event can come with surprises, stress, and triumph. Here are 12 moments you understand if you’ve worked on nonprofit events.

1. When you apologize because you keep snapping at your loved ones the week before the event.

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 2. When the volunteer running your sound system calls and says, “I have bronchitis.”

3. When you see your co-workers all dressed up.

4. Giving the final pep talk to your team before attendees arrive.

5. When you see a big crowd approaching the registration table.

6. When your boss finds a typo in the event program…that you wrote.

7. Waiting for someone—anyone—to bid on that one auction item.

8. When that local band you hired is Lighting. It. Up.

9. When you’re SO CLOSE to your fundraising goal.

10. When the event ends and your team must subtly encourage people to go home.

11. When the event is finally over and you’re torn between the need to celebrate and the need to clean up. 

12. When you wake up the morning after an event that has consumed your whole life for weeks.

Share your stressful, funny, or emotional moments from nonprofit events in the comments below!


  • Sarah

    My favorite: We had a fundraising event scheduled at a local winery that was across the street from my apartment. I woke up to this horrendous metal crushing sound the night before the fundraiser. A semi truck had just driven through the winery.
    We were able to somehow manage to pull it off at an alternate location and let all of the guests know and no one was angry. And the most fortunate part: A few weeks later we had a 5k and hadn’t been able to secure a water donation. The semi-truck that ran through the winery was hauling bottled water. Score.

  • Cameo Bobo

    Love this! I’m working an event right now, this hits home lol! Great! Thanks!

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