How to host a charity coffee morning
With the World's Biggest Coffee Morning approaching, here's a rundown of fundraising ideas, cake recipes and decoration inspo for your socially distanced and online events
Hosting a coffee morning is one of the most popular ways to raise money for charity. Even in a time of social distancing and restrictions on the number people who are allowed to meet up, it is still possible to organise a fun and memorable event. So, if you are organising a gathering for a select group of friends or are taking your coffee morning online, here’s our guide to getting it just right.
Socially-distant coffee mornings
Due to the current coronavirus restrictions, if you are hosting a coffee morning for up to six friends or family members, make sure you hold it somewhere where you can be properly socially distanced. If you have a spacious garden that would be ideal, or alternatively arrange to meet your friends in a park. You could organise a walk, put together individual parcels of food for each attendee and ask people to bring their own flasks of coffee. Another option is to drop off freshly made cakes or biscuits to your neighbours in return for a donation. Doorstep chats and cuppas, particularly with those who have been shielding, would be a lovely way to do a charity coffee morning.
Virtual coffee mornings
Under normal circumstances, many people host coffee mornings with a large guest list to create a wonderful party atmosphere and to really get those donations flooding in. Despite the coronavirus rules, you can still organise a big bash, but you’ll need to take it online - Zoom will allow you to invite as many people as you’d like. Delivering parcels of sweet and savoury treats will be a nice way of making your guests feel part of things, as will sending them a selection of Party Pieces decorations (or letting them know which ones to order themselves), so everyone has the same backdrop. We’re thinking balloon arches, foil curtains and bunting. Everyone using the same fun tableware, such as items from our Truly Fairy collection, will be a lovely touch, too.
In terms of your fundraising, get those invites our early and ask people to donate in return for attending the coffee morning (be it in person or online!), and you could up the ante by organising some extra fundraising activities. If yourself or one of your friends is a baking expert, ask them to lead a bake along session – send people a list of the ingredients they need ahead of time and make sure the recipe isn’t too complicated! The resulting bakes could then be sold for donations. Online quizzes are another great way to make sure Zoom calls are a good laugh and inclusive of all participants. We’ve put together a guide to running a successful virtual quiz here. One particularly relevant idea for charity coffee mornings is to give people the chance to play Jokers by buying answers to questions they are stuck on - £10 per answer, say, with all cash raised going towards your fundraising total. Offer a nice prize to the winners of the quiz to really get the competitive juices flowing.
You can, of course, host a charity coffee morning in aid of any charity that means a lot to you – simply pick a good cause and get organising. You should drop your chosen charity a line and see if they can offer any assistance in promoting your event. If you want to take part in a nationwide fundraising effort, the next opportunity to do so is the World’s Biggest Coffee Morning, which will be taking place on September 25. The event, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, raised more than £27.5m in 2019, and although things maybe a little different year due to the coronavirus pandemic, organisers will be hoping they raise even more this year. Sign up via the Macmillan website and, once registered, you’ll be sent a fundraising kit and a dedicated webpage will be set up where your invitees and other friends and family can make donations. Although the main date is September 25, you can host your coffee morning on any day you wish to.
No coffee morning is complete without a delicious cake (or two!) to get stuck into. Whether you are hosting small group in person or you are delivering cake to a larger group, a homemade cake just can’t be beaten. Why not give Tanya Burr’s unbelievably decadent and chocolatey ‘Sunday cake’ a go? Former Masterchef semi-finalist Theo Michaels’ No Bake Chocolate Cheesecake is another winner – and absolutely foolproof. For further inspiration, go to the Macmillan website, which is stacked with recipes, including savoury snacks, such as vegetable samosas and chorizo sausage rolls, and more cake ideas. We wouldn't say no to a slice of this sticky toffee pudding cake!
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