Planning a Fundraising Event – Volunteers

Week 2 of our Planning a Fundraising Event is focused on Volunteers.

Every nonprofit understands the value of good volunteers. Some are great at handling the smaller time consuming tasks and others are great at generating public support. They can help to make your event run smoothly, and they can reassure donors that they are very pleased to be involved with the organization’s efforts. They are true advocates for your nonprofit in every aspect. 

Roles Volunteers Can Play

Volunteers are not staff. They are not responsible for the planning of the event, strategizing the fundraising campaigns, nor securing the vendors and ensuring that the entire event goes as planned. This is a responsibility saved for staff. However, they are great assistants in all of the following capacities:

  • Event Coordinator Assistant
  • Planning Assistants
  • Event Communications Manager Assistant
  • Social Media Assistants, Copywriters, Editors, Marketing Associates
  • Event Operations Manager Assistant
  • Greeters, Decorators, Prep/Breakdown Assistants, Drivers
  • Fundraising Program Manager Assistant
  • Gift Attendants, Goal Meter Attendant, Auction/Game Attendants.

Recruiting Volunteers

Recruiting volunteers is an ongoing campaign regardless of your current efforts. However, in having collected the information from them, it should be apparent which areas the volunteers are interested in supporting and assisting. 

Donor List

Your donor management system should have collected a lot of information about every donor, including the contribution amounts and their willingness to serve in a volunteer capacity. From this list, you can identify past and current donors who may be willing to serve as Fundraising Event volunteers. 

Prospective volunteers can also come from your email list, which may not include former donors. These could be subscribers to your email campaigns, people who have attended your programs or events, and more. 

Donors and attendees are a great resource for identifying supportive volunteers.


Staff can also do their part by reaching out to friends and family to see if they may also be willing to contribute. Leave no stone unturned if your volunteer list is short.

You can also notify your social media followers that you are looking for Fundraising Event volunteers. This allows your followers to also share the post and spread the word for you. Event invitations on social media sites such as Facebook also alert each attendees’ friends about the event when it shows the attendee’s interest in participating. This garners interest to a much wider audience that may otherwise be unreachable.

Volunteer Websites

If you are still in need of volunteers, there are great platforms available to provide willing volunteers to be matched with local nonprofits in need of volunteers. A great resource for this is Volunteer Match. This great resource helps identify volunteers in many areas of the country, so it is very possible that you can find eager and willing volunteers right in your community. The great part is that this platform also identifies their skills, location, and availability.