Working in charity event management brings a whole other layer to the expertise needed for delivering quality events on budget – because the budgets themselves can often be minimal and even non-existent. Particularly for fundraising events, there’s a high demand for event managers who are skilled in negotiation, in gaining sponsorship and in delivering successful events which result in engagement with the charity and much-needed funding and support.
If you think this sounds like you, then you could be perfect for one of the most challenging, but ultimately rewarding of all events roles.
A Day in the Life of a Charity Event Manager
One of the key things about charity event management is that you can literally find yourself organising any type of event: from a conference about research, for information sharing or for reporting back to trustees; charity awards ceremonies, gala dinner fundraisers; to a live arts or music events fundraising auctions and exhibitions; and even local, national and international sporting events. Just name the event and you could well be involved in it!
So, whilst it’s impossible to outline a typical day, it is possible to make sure you know which key skills areas any charity event manager must be able to bring to the role – both in daily practice and in order to deliver fully across every event:
- Objective setting – whether it’s raising funds, awareness or acknowledging and rewarding support, the event manager is integral to responding to client objectives which events which deliver.
- Market awareness, marketing, and negotiation – from being able to identify the target market so that the event is perfectly pitched to produce results, to marketing the event to sponsors and participants, and negotiating the charity’s interests with sponsors, charity event management can be extremely marketing focused, so it demands strength in these areas.
- Creativity – securing engagement and funds for charities means securing interest in the event, so coming up with creative ideas which inspire enthusiasm, interest, and participation is crucial.
If you’re worried your skills may be lacking in any of these areas, then don’t worry – that’s what we’re here for. Our CIM-accredited qualifications mean that expertise in marketing is embedded in each course and our hugely experienced charity event expert lecturers will inform and involve you in all the essentials for the role!
How to Get into Charity Event Management
Volunteering is essential for gaining experience for a career in events and the good news is that the charity events sector offers plenty of opportunities. After all, donating time by volunteering is a way of actively supporting the charity and helping to make the event successful at the same time, so getting involved with a local charity’s events as a volunteer is a great way to start.
It can be easy enough to do this yourself, by contacting charities, but it can be hit-and-miss as to whether you gain the wide variety of experience, including the leadership experience that the role involves. Alternatively, when you choose one of our courses you’ll also have plenty of access to volunteering opportunities:
As alumni Ammar shared, after his involvement in the Ambition event, volunteering’s the aspect of Event Academy courses which “gives you an appreciation of everything that goes into making an event successful, that you can’t get from the lectures alone.”
So gaining experience is essential and, whether you’re switching careers, improving your current event management skills or starting out with event management, we have courses which can fit flexibly with what you need: such as online study or full or part-time live courses here with us in London. You can also study at whichever level suits you:
- Foundation – an intensive, level 3 qualification to introduce you to the events industry.
- Diploma – a level 4 certified qualification covering everything you need to know about the fundamentals of event management – and then some!
- Postgraduate – a level 7 qualification with an initial 3 months of learning, volunteering and practice, followed by 3 months of work placement.
- Degree-alternative – progressing from level 3 to level 7, this combination of our Foundation, Diploma and Postgraduate courses is around a third of the cost and time of a traditional degree course and offers live event management, work placement and individual mentoring.
And of course, don’t forget that highly respected, industry-relevant CIM accreditation for all our course, which can really make a difference when you’re trying to break into charity event management.
Charity Event Management Career Opportunities - from Exciting Roles to Big-Name Brands and Companies
Although many of us commonly associate the term ‘charity events’ with fundraisers, the opportunities for charity event roles aren’t restricted to fundraising (although most events will include an element of this). Charitable event roles are extremely varied and can include professional event roles which focus on:
- Fundraising and marketing
- Creative solutions
- Sponsorship, recruitment, and engagement (from patrons and sponsors to volunteers and staff)
- Corporate strategy
With many national and global charities, such as Greenpeace and Oxfam involved in other major events such as the Glastonbury Festival, a charity event manager could literally find themselves working in event-specific roles, alongside global brands, or working for corporations who want an in-house event professional to develop their corporate strategy for charitable giving, or for private and public sector services which require in-house event managers, such as hospice, hospital event teams.
Seriously, of all the possible event roles, charity event management is a vast area! If you’d like a wider view on salary and role expectations for charity event managers, check out our popular blog post on the subject.
Charity Event Management - Our Expert Lecturers
At Event Academy, we’re all about learning through experience – and we don’t just mean your own! All our lecturers are event industry experts, delivering live events as well as lecturing for us, so you can learn through their experiences too.
Our lecturers also offer their own areas of expertise – so if charity event management is an area which specifically interests you, you’ll have the chance to learn from experts who have a successful track record in planning and running events which really deliver:
- Claire Derrick – as Director of Learning here at Event Academy, lectures from Claire involve accessing everything you need to know about event management from a talented event professional and teacher. Claire’s vast specialist skills include working with global charities, Royalty and celebrities, negotiation and all aspects of marketing and finance needed to ensure that charity fundraising events achieve what they set out to do. Claire’s also innovative and inspirational when it comes to challenging events which engage much-needed awareness and funds for charities.
- Kirstie Christie – think about those events you know for supporting Cancer Research UK, and the chances are that Fundraising Manager Kirstie has been (or still is) involved! From the UK-wide participation of Race For Life to celebrity involvement in Stand Up to Cancer, Kirstie’s our go-to guru when it comes to organising charity events which deliver funds, awareness, and success! Our students gain huge insight into the world of negotiation and how to pull in celebrities and PR opportunities to help charities.
And about those lectures – don’t let the term ‘lecture’ put you off! Alumni Natalie has plenty to say on how Event Academy lectures are just that bit different and really help engage and interest you:
“The lecturers are crazy. They bring so much life, so much energy into every single lecture, there’s no way that you’d ever be bored.”
“Professional and engaged, and bring a real positive energy to their lectures and to the students.”
And of course, our lecturers don’t just stand up and tell you all about it, many also involve you, with on-site visits to in-progress events they’re working on, something which has a real impact on both your learning and your professional experience.
Our courses readily include this level of immersion with the work of professional event managers, because our aim is simple: this experiential basis for all of our learning content should really enhance your own knowledge, practice, network, opportunities and prospects for becoming a professional charity event manager.