Why events like the IoF’s National Fundraising Awards are a must …for charities and suppliers alike

The Awards give us a rare moment to recognise and celebrate all that those within our community have achieved.

I’ve always loved a good awards do and the National Fundraising Awards has long been a highlight on that front. When you’ve got a passion for fundraising and all that it achieves, it’s fantastic to be at an event that celebrates the best teams, campaigns and most inspirational individuals.

 There’s always at least one winner that has us all by the heart. It’s impossible to walk away from a night showcasing how charity fundraising is pushing the boundaries of innovation and professionalism, without feeling inspired and with a renewed sense of pride to be a part of this sector.

But there’s also a strong business case for those like myself and many of my clients who are suppliers to the sector, and that’s why I’ve always invested in being there on the night.

Although it’s a glitzy event, ultimately, for me it’s about the fundraising community. It unites all of us who work in and around fundraising. The Awards give us a rare moment to recognise and celebrate all that those within our community have achieved.

So, for any supplier, it’s an important moment to bring your business to the table (quite literally) and position it firmly at the heart of the sector, alongside the very best.

With the room being a veritable charity Who’s Who list, it goes without saying that the networking is hard to beat. It’s a great opportunity to meet new contacts and to catch up with people you haven’t seen for a while in a relaxed and celebratory environment. And it’s just as important that we celebrate those who we currently work with too.

Life goes by at such a pace that it’s all too easy to focus on goals and outputs, rather than the strength of our teams, our working relationships and partnerships. One of the things I really love about this type of event is that it encourages us all to step back from our day-to-day work, and focus for a while on to the people we are working with and for, and what we have been able to achieve together.

For me, it’s a great chance to savour time with my team and clients, to do what I can to make them feel valued, to get to know them a little better and to strengthen those relationships. It’s rare that we have the time to talk freely, but this is one of those feel-good occasions when we can, and it’s so important to nurture those relationships for the future.

Last but very much not least, I find that being part of the general chat on the night can be incredibly helpful. Listening and talking with clients, peers and the team about how things are changing in the wider fundraising marketplace enables us to explore those issues and to gauge a wide range of views on hot topics and trends; a perspective that can be invaluable if you’re advising charities in your job or maybe building a business case.

The Awards are less than five weeks away. So, if you haven’t booked your place or table yet, I’d encourage you to get on it and I hope to see you on the night.

 Jenny Turner, Founder and Managing Director of Turner PR

 Book your place at the National Fundraising awards here

This blog was first published by the Institute of Fundraising, 28 May 2018, here: https://www.institute-of-fundraising.org.uk/blog/why-events-like-the-national-fundraising-awards-are-a-must/

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