The holiday season is a time to give back to the community, especially to those in need. By encouraging your business to participate in charity events, you can set an example for ethical business and you can contribute to a good cause. But to make an impact on the community, your employees have to be involved. What better way to draw in everyone than through a company party? By turning your company holiday party into a charity event, you can promote charitable giving with money that’s usually spent on extra benefits. Follow these guidelines to turn your company party into a charity event:
Research Your Customers’ and Employees’ Interests
Most importantly, your company has to promote donations to causes that your employees support. It’s good to keep in mind your customers’ interests, too, so you can ask them for support. Contact organizations that are popular among your employees, asking if your company can partner with them to raise awareness and funds for their causes. With their approval, you can promote giving with the following techniques:
- Host a volunteer day at an organization or charity for your employees and customers
- Encourage fundraising by offering prizes to teams who raise the most
- Remind employees of the charity party – the finale and celebration of fundraising
Create a Matching Program
You can encourage donations among your employees and customers by matching any gifts or time they donate. Several large corporations, such as Boeing®, have implemented effective gift-matching programs. Boeing® matches employees’ financial donations and provides grants for volunteer time and fundraising walks/runs. The diversity within this program allows employees to give however they can, whether through financial support, volunteering, or a fundraising event.*
By offering to donate as much as your employees and customers do, you show that you fully support the initiative and value their participation. You also empower them to double their impact on the community. Sometimes companies set a cap to their matching programs or only offer it to your employees, so follow guidelines that are best for your business. Simply showing your employees that you care about their charities can build stronger company camaraderie. The generous attitude you cultivate might motivate them to spread the giving spirit to friends and families, too.
Celebrate and Continue Donations with a Party
Turning your annual holiday party into a charity event doesn’t mean you can’t have fun. Dedicate a half or whole day to some of the following events:
- Recognition of everyone’s giving spirit
- Prizes for teams with the most donations
- Contests to create holiday gifts for the charities
- Internal bake sale and contest with proceeds going to the charities
By matching gifts and advertising charity partnerships, you improve your business ethics while fighting for good causes throughout the year.
*2012’s Top Matching Gift and Volunteer Programs. Double the Donation, www.doublethedonation.com (2012).