Gamify Your Mission

Gamify Your Mission

When you are throwing an annual gala fundraiser for a non-profit, it’s important that the organization’s mission stays front and center. People need to know who you are, what you do, and what part their support plays in the big picture. But you still want your event to be fun so that people remember they had a good time and are more likely to come back the next year (and bring friends).

I recently attended a gala in Tacoma, WA that incorporated an element that married mission and fun in a way that really engaged attendees.

This particular gala was for a youth service organization. During the silent auction and reception there were program recipients roaming the crowd. Guests were approached and asked if they’d like to hear a fact about the organization. If you listened to a fact, you got a star shaped sticker. The more facts you heard, the more stickers you collected. Once all the tables were seated in ballroom, the emcee asked the tables to count their collective total of stars. The table with the most stars collected was rewarded by receiving their entrees prior to any other table.


The stickers were easily affixed to bidder paddles and/or programs. It was a fun competition (and we all know how competitive people can be). In this particular example there was no added cost to the organization for the reward (though you could certainly amp this up with something other than VIP dinner service). And in my case, as someone new to the organization, I learned much more about who they are and what they do than I ever would have just from the evening’s program.

I love finding new ways to incorporate the organizations mission into a gala in non-traditional way. This was one of the best ideas I’ve seen in a while. I think it’s also a great answer for when you have program recipients, volunteers, associate artists, or other staff that you want to have a role and a presence at your event, but you need an appropriate and useful way to incorporate them. This idea is definitely a keeper.

No Comments

Leave a Comment