Charity Event best practices

I’ve seen FoodMachine mentioned before (Facebook? Old Forums) and was thinking: hey, that’s a great idea. And there’s always someone in the community who could use help, you know? Be it a drive for food, school supplies, disaster relief, blood, etc., I think we can use Warmachine, Warcaster, MonPoc, etc., as a positive attention getter to get folks together to help.

I’m wondering what best practices are for these things are. Anyone run charity events care to share?

I’ve not done one for gaming per se, but have run two food drives when I was playing paintball. First thing I learned after the fact? If your team/group is running the event? They should be prohibited from getting prizes if there are. It looks a little weird if your folks are getting goodies rather than other folks.

Are you asking for best practices regarding the attendees, or best practices regarding the collection and distribution of proceeds raised by the event?

For the latter, I’ll offer this bit of advice: ask the recipients what they need. I shouldn’t need to say why, but to use an aphorism that adequately summarizes the issue:

Gamers gonna game.

(Reformulated: the rando who donates a a hundred 19-cent cans of pickled beets isn’t actually helping anyone, you know?)

Planning the event then running it. I figure there’s always charities, community groups, and non profits you can contact to ask what they need. Find one you like, make contact.