How to Organize a Taste Test Fundraiser

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Fundraisers require dedication, organization and a lot of spirit. With the right planning and a good team, they can be pulled off with great success. A taste-testing fundraiser is a great idea for those looking to try something that not only makes money but brings the community together as well. There are several ways to plan a taste test fundraiser, including soliciting donations from local pizza joints, offering different food items from a cookbook that you are also selling or hosting a potluck where each table offers servings of different foods for a cheap fare.

Pull together a committee. Involve family, friends and other interested persons in the planning of the event. Assign each of the below tasks to a different committee member, ensuring that deadlines are set for each. You will also need to recruit volunteers for the actual event.

Determine the format of the taste-testing event. The simplest format is to solicit donations of food and then charge a small fee for food tickets. You may also collect donations at each food station. Another option is to contact local restaurants for donations.

Plan, plan, plan. Commit your date, options, assignments and goals to paper. Revisit this plan and timeline frequently and revise as necessary. Set goals. These are as important as deadlines and are an important part of the plan. If you don't know where you are going, how will you get there? Determine what you want to accomplish and get your team excited about it.

Establish a mechanism for accepting donations. This can be done by establishing an account with a bank to accept donations, establishing a Paypal account, or by simply establishing a location where cash donations can be accepted.

Send letters seeking donations from local businesses for supplies, hall donation and food items. Ensure that these letters clearly articulate where donations will be accepted and who to call with questions.

Advertise your event. Use social media to get the word out by creating a website or Facebook page and sending it to friends, asking that they get the word out. Develop fliers to hang around your community. Contact your local newspaper to see whether they have a social notices section where free space is allotted for charities or fundraiser announcements.

Decide on entertainment. Do you want to enlist local children to perform? A local choir? Perhaps just some light music playing in the background. Whatever you choose, you will need to sign up a volunteer to coordinate it.

Hold regular meetings with your volunteer team. These can be virtual meetings via email, phone or in person. Regular check-ins can ensure that plans are on track as you move toward the big event.