The virtual conference created by fundraisers for fundraisers.
The conference you can’t afford to miss but can definitely afford to attend.
Whatever you call it, or whatever tagline you stick on it, it simply cannot do it justice for what happened online on November 19th 2019.
Fundraising Everywhere, a virtual fundraising conference, was created by myself and Simon Scriver out of a desire for supporting charity fundraisers with the practical tools they need to be able to do their job well.
As a well-seasoned conference organiser and speaker who knows the barriers to accessing great learning, the virtual element gave a way to be able to reach those fundraisers that desperately need that help but can’t afford to spend full days out of the office or pay for travel.
We worked with our networks, spoke to fundraisers about what they wanted, and developed (in our opinion) THE BEST conference line-up with some of the world’s best fundraising experts. Location was no challenge so we could take our pick.
But Fundraising Everywhere surpassed every expectation and brought together amazingly talented, kind, and supportive fundraisers from across the world to learn together and feel proud to be a fundraiser.
If you check out the hashtag you’ll find so much inspiration, learning and networking, but for now here are my overall highlights from Fundraising Everywhere 2019.
- The support. The celebration! Every message made my heart swell. On the hashtag, in the website networking box, in a private speaker DM group they called “The Green Room” – the connection between fundraisers, speakers and us (the hosts) was unreal
- Recorded sessions meant speakers could engage with attendees and facilitate an online discussion in the networking box and encourage questions during their session
- Recorded sessions also meant the content was all killer. No nerves, no fluff, no “tasks”. From start to finish, complete practical tips which transformed the experience for attendees
- Fundraisers took immediate action after sessions to make a positive change. Following Aaron Hearne’s session about the importance of owning your story, one fundraiser made a short film about her tragic connection with the charity she worked for on her phone and posted it to the Facebook Group
- Live hosting the conference! Being able to react real-time to sessions and conversations meant we felt like we were really there with attendees, learning together. The continuous stream was slick and created an experience
- Literally fundraising, everywhere. We had people join us on the bus, train, in a hospital waiting room, at home in their PJS…everywhere!
- Attendees being able to do what was important to them without fear of missing out on learning – doing the school run, attending a meeting, taking a brain break. All of the sessions are available as downloads post-conference so there’s no pressure to be 100% present
- How the conference reached people with disabilities who miss out on traditional learning opportunities and the subtitles helped those who don’t have English as a first language understand the range of accents and dialects
- The FOMO! We had over 100 (& counting) people join us on the day because the hashtag action was so strong. The beauty of a virtual conference? They can catch up on everything they’d missed before they logged in
- Surprise guests! We were hosting the conference from sponsor Lightful’s office so it was a great way to get nearby friends online to host with us in between the sessions. Totally unprepared but I think it brought more authenticity and gave us another way to celebrate awesome people
- There was no competition or ‘us and them’, Fundraising Everywhere was all about bringing together the right people for the right topics and for the right purpose – to make sure fundraisers had the tools they needed to be able to change the world through their charity
- We pay speakers for their time and expertise. If we can’t afford to pay our speakers, we can’t afford to run a conference. And as annoyingly generous fundraisers, many of our speakers gave this fee back to us to fund bursaries for fundraisers who couldn’t afford the low ticket fee…
- So we used the returned bursary money to do our part in Climate Action and planted twenty trees in the Caledonian Forest (Fundraising Everywhere Forest by 2050?)
- Other speakers chose to donate their fee to charity. Eight charities will receive a share of €2,000
- A few anonymous supporters and some awesome Fundraising Everywhere partners funded further tickets to support the development of consultants, freelancers and those without a training budget
- Over 70% of our attendees were from small charities and therefore paid nothing to attend
- Companies around the world hosted watch parties to bring their contacts together for a day of learning and connection
- Attendees received prizes during the day for their engagement and dedication to the conference
- Sponsors provided a digital “delegate bag” – bonus content and learning materials to add to the already sterling twelve hours of fundraising training
The good news?
We’re doing it all again, and MORE!
Check out this article from Howard Lake for the exciting announcement.
Fundraising Everywhere and the Fundraising Everywhere Festival will be back in 2020, plus we’ve opened an exclusive members club for regular, virtual access to training, coaching and support. Book your place now so you’re all prepped for the fundraising learning event of the year.
We’re also working on exciting plans to make 2020’s events even more immersive and accessible for attendees to build on what has already been an amazing conference and experience. Hopefully we’ll see you there.
Thank you to everyone who made it possible. The speakers, the sponsors, the volunteers, the attendees, and of course my Fundraising Everywhere co-founder, Simon, for making this everything it was.