Community Book Festival
Every day hundreds, if not thousands of families look forward to their local upcoming weekend activities.
For some, it is the local fair that rolls into town with the rides for their children. Others, it is a walk on the water front with good food and drinks. For most, it is time to relax, have a cold drink, and enjoy things like Seafair in Washington State, or the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach for Southern California residents. Without local non-profit organizations, most of your favorite weekend activities would not exist.Non-profit organizations support many local events, as well as community programs that would not normally receive assistance. For a non-profit organization to flourish, it must have organization, structure, income, volunteers, a location, and events to move it forward. However, sometime with the fluctuation of the economy, it can make things difficult for the non-profit to move forward or even survive.
Local and National Economic Impact For nearly 3 years, the United States has suffered a recession of epic proportions. Charity and non-profit organizations are suffering more than ever as Americans struggle to save every penny possible.According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, in December 2007, the United States’ economy fell into recession. However, Dick Conway, a local economist and co-publisher of The Puget Sound Economic Forecaster, reported the Puget Sound region did not enter one until the end of 2008. Conway suggests that, “All of this is related to the collapse of the credit and housing markets” (James, 2009, para. 5). Because of this weak economy, not only nationally, regionally, and in local cities such as Seattle, citizens are much less likely to donate to worthwhile causes such as a non-profit community book drive.
Especially with unemployment in Washington state being as high as it is (9. 1%, about 323,400 people), and a record amount of deficit in the state budget, there is not much extra money to spread around. Mass layoffs in state jobs have increased with the recession. Some of the states’ largest companies are also feeling the sting of the drop in the economy. For example, in February 2010, the Seattle Times reported that Boeing issued a total of 1,020 layoff notices lasting 60 days, with 520 occurring locally. This came after 25 layoff notices in January “Boeing hands out 1,020 layoff warnings”, 2010, para. 1).
The Seattle Times also reports as of May 2009, another local company, Microsoft, was laying off employees affecting about 1,200 positions in Washington State. The official company statement said, “As part of the plan we announced in January to reduce costs and increase efficiencies, today we are eliminating additional positions across several areas of the company. While job eliminations are always difficult, we are taking these necessary actions in response to the global economic downturn” (Chan, 2009, para. 1, 4).These 2 companies, along with state jobs, are responsible for most of Washington’s economy. However, traditionally most people who live in the Northwest are very caring people and are always willing to help those in need, no matter what. However, like in any endeavor, organization is essential.
Organization of Book Festival Organization is crucial to successfully completing almost any task. Choose when and where the non profit book festival is going to take place. Once a non profit book festival has been chosen, first thing, it is essential to get organized right at the beginning.The first step to successful organization of a book festival is planning as far in advanced as possible and gathering plenty of volunteers. Along with recruiting volunteers, be sure to bring in some teachers, librarians, authors, and reading specialists to help bring credibility to the festival. Try to gather community support by seeking volunteers from city officials, school district faculty, city, and county volunteers as well. Last, but certainly not least, be sure to get students and parents involved, which will bring added enthusiasm to the project.
Now the ball is rolling and there are plenty of volunteers that are willing and able to contribute on various levels to ensure a successful non profit book festival. Second step to a well organized non profit book festival is to begin to spread the word on all levels of available media. People need to know all about the non profit book festival, from when, where, what, and who is going to be there. With so much technology available to people today, there are many avenues to approach advertising the book festival. Do not get overwhelmed with how to advertise.It is essential to remember, this is a non profit book festival, so people need to be resourceful and utilize what is available. Some very useful forms of advertising may be school newsletters, websites, signs, flyers, and local newspapers.
Third step to a successful non profit book fair is to remember it is a fair. A fair is supposed to be fun and appealing to all age levels, especially to students and readers. The book festival must be visually appealing, much like a carnival or fair. Make colorful displays with themes such as emphasis on a specific holiday, animals, undersea life, authors, and reading levels.Good visual appeal will draw the readers to view all the book festival has to offer. Remember, “Organization, communication, and a dash of fun will make your book fair an event to remember” (Prato, 2010, para. 1).
To showcase such an event, funds will need to be secured. Location, Advertising, and Disbursements One of the most difficult challenges of the nonprofit community book festival will fall on the location of the event. The most logical location will probably be at the cities biggest and most popular library. Using this location should help publicize the event. Advertising will also be a factor to the success of the festival.Good advertising through the city, local newspapers, and internet will provide good coverage for the event. Covering these bases will help build a good planning structure for the actual event.
The community book festival will need to be eye-catching and interactive to help promote individuals to donate and support the event. One idea is setting up autograph booths from well renowned authors, as well as up and coming local authors to promote their books. This will give readers a chance to meet the author, check out their other favorite books, and show the support needed for the festival.Catering the event will also be a necessity to provide finger foods and drinks to all guest and attendees for the event. To help promote more funds, a raffle and contest will be set up such as: speed-reading contest, a question game of how well you know your author, and raffling off books and gifts. This is a nonprofit event all funds will go towards covering the cost of the event. The disbursements of the total amount of income received from the fundraiser will be distributed by the person in charge of all the funds, usually an accountant in the committee.
All monies collected prior to the event will help pay for the location, catering, and most of the events activities. Funds that are collected during the event will also help cover some of the event activities, as well as payment of the author’s time to come to the event. Since we are a nonprofit organization, the idea will be to have the authors come on a charity basis, but if there is some cost to having authors come to the event the monies collected can help secure that issue.All other funds left over will be allocated to the city’s library system to help cover any cost for repairs or upgrades to these facilities. Fundraising Many non-profit organizations coordinate and participate in fundraising. There are countless ways to assist companies reach their financial goals. A key component to fundraising is to plan, plan and plan.
There is nothing more frustrating to attend a sponsorship or activity that has not been well thought out and organized. Therefore, there are a few basic steps and traditions to fundraising.The most customary way to fundraise a non-profit organization is through a variety of grants. The first step towards being awarded a grant is to create a proposal and then transition into grant writing. Grant writing is a tool to help gain support and money to sustain the cause. One good resource to issue grants is through the website USA. gov which is federally funded.
The second option is to fund through private foundations. There are going to be times that companies will have to think outside the box to experience a successful fundraising event.The most general ways to fundraise a book festival is through community events and activities. Bake sales are common for generating additional support. If there are great bakers, a bake sale fundraiser would be a good, comfortable option to raise money. Creating holiday baskets and auctioning the items off is another great way to fundraise and become profitable. Donating seasonal wreaths and displaying as a public sales has also been known to be successful.
Last but not least, car washes, especially those held during the summer months, can be a quick easy way to raise money needed for upcoming events.What a great way to collect funds and help others at the same time. Some people may prefer to donate their time and efforts instead of monetarily which can be a benefit. The non-profit organization will need help situating the table for the books. Today, it’s even more important to become creative and integrate innovative ideas to fundraise. According to Susie Vigon, she suggests to, “Partner with companies or events that will donate a percentage of their earnings to your organization” (Vigon, 2006, para. 4).
In addition, according to Susie, “Get a Massage for a good cause! This idea somewhat goes along with fundraising at other events. Instead of using your vendor spot for a silent auction or game of chance, get 2 massage therapists to come out and give $1 a minute chair massages. The therapists can either donate their time or do a 50-50 split with the organization. In the right venue, this can be contagious. Once people ‘see’ others getting chair massages, you will be surprised to see how fast they will want to get one too!These are just a few of the many ways you can create a buzz for your organization and fundraise at the same time by thinking outside the box. ” (Vigon, 2006, para. 5).
Overall fundraising for a non-profit organization requires considerable level of social networking. Building relationships, relating and sharing values, are all key aspects of building and developing a fundraising process. Book events can be very expensive to produce but can be done with the companies best partners. Regardless of what kind of non-profit organization is started, many factors can affect the outcome.The directors of such an organization must take into account its day to day operations and the status of the economy. Also vital to success of the organization, is the communities’ passion for the cause. Very little support will be given if the community as a whole does not care, or doesn’t know enough about the reason the non-profit exists.
Most of the time, advertising that is done for a non-profit comes out of their own pocket, therefore giving them a very little budget for popular ways of public advertisement that for profit companies take advantage of all the time.With proper awareness, prior planning, and a worthwhile cause, the community can come together and assist the non-profit on the road to success.References Boeing hands out 1,020 layoff warnings. (2010). SeattleTimes. com Retrieved from
com/html/businesstechnology/2011122372_boeing19.html”>http://seattletimes. nwsource. com/html/businesstechnology/2011122372_boeing19. html Chan, S. (2009). More layoffs at Microsoft today, says company e-mail from Steve Ballmer.
SeattleTimes. com Retrieved from http://blog. seattletimes. nwsource. com/techtracks/2009/05/05/more_layoffs_at_m