Heroes Success Guide
We've gone Virtual!
It’s the Homes First Fundraiser!
The Heroes for Housing Breakfast raises a significant amount of funds to support our programs and households throughout the year. It’s also a fun event and a great time to get together and support Homes First.
As a table hero, you fill your virtual table with friends and family. Guests and table heroes do not buy a ticket or pay to attend the Breakfast event. Please make a gift yourself and let everyone know it’s a fundraiser. Homes First will do the asking!
The most important thing you can do to encourage giving is to let your guests know how their gift will help and that you also support Homes First.
Heroes for Housing Goals
Homes First’s goal is to raise more than $135,000 at the Heroes for Housing Breakfast on September 16, 2020 in support of our programs, services, and community efforts.
Homes First also seeks event sponsorship to cover the event costs so more of each dollar raised goes to directly support Homes First programs and services.
Fundraising Ideas for Table Heroes
Think about how much you would like to raise at your table, set a goal, and then invite your friends to help you reach that goal.
Set a fundraising goal for your table and inform your guests of your goal. This can really help encourage giving.
Some table heroes may choose to generously match any guest who gives at a certain level – if you are willing to do this, please make sure your guests know that you will be matching any gift at or above that level, doubling their impact!
Setting a Goal
Setting a goal for your table (ex. you and your guests can aim to raise $5,000 to help bring more affordable rental homes to our community now and forever) is a great way to get people excited about giving and making a greater impact together. Let your guests know your table goal!
Other Giving Incentives & Ideas
Monthly payment options are available. It’s all on the online donation page this year and easy to let us know that you want your $300 pledge at the Breakfast to be made through a $25 monthly payment.
Become a monthly donor! Monthly donors provide the stability Homes First needs to help our community members throughout the year.
Ask your guests if they have an employer matching gift form they can use to double their gift. Boeing, Microsoft, Starbucks, and many others will match all gifts to Homes First.
Since we're virtual this year - we have unlimited space! Invite your out-of-town friends. Ask friends to join your virtual table by giving a gift in support of your favorite organization – Homes First! There will be a live stream and an opportunity to give online.
FYI - at our 10.22.20 Celebration and Awards, we present a prize to the Table Hero who raised the highest amount for affordable homes! We'd love to present that to YOU!!
Who to invite to fill your virtual table?
Put together a list of people you’d like to invite. Think of who would enjoy the speakers. This a fundraising event, so think about who will have fun supporting Homes First financially.
Think of all your circles – your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, clients, colleagues, your children’s dentist and doctor, members of your neighborhood parenting group or pre-school co-op/ daycare.
When and how to invite?
It is best to start sending out invitations and getting firm commitments by September 01 at the latest. Guest lists are requested by September 11, 2020.
Call, text, message, email, create an event on Facebook, or use Evite or other tools — try a combination of ways to invite your friends. Remember that most people need more than one reminder. You can download our save the date/invitation image from our website at www.homesfirst.org/success-guide.
What to say in an invitation:
Please join me for a fundraiser breakfast September 16 at 7:45am, supporting Homes First, a local nonprofit I'm passionate about. They provide the opportunity for our lowest of income community members to have a safe and healthy home they can afford. Homes First matters to me because (fill in your reason here). I hope you'll join me in supporting more affordable homes in our area.
You can register guests today at this link: homesfirst.org/guests
Table Heroes are responsible for ensuring their guests are registered.
As guests RSVP with you, please ask them register online by thanking them and sending them the link. There are no physical tickets or costs, but pre-registration is encouraged.
This helps us plan the event and communicate information directly with your guests. Guest registrations are requested by September 01, 2020 – but you don’t have to wait that long! Register now and forget about it!
Click here to access our online registration form.
Fill out each field and submit the online form for EACH guest or ask them to do it by sending them the link (https://homesfirst.org/guests). Please ask them to include your name as the table captain for each guests. Please enter email and mailing information as requested. Homes First will use these to send thank-you’s after the event.
Please keep a list of your registrations on your computer or fridge or desk, so you can track who you have already registered. You do not need to register your entire table at the same time.
If you need to remove a guest from your table, please email us at email@example.com with your name and the name of the guest to be removed.
You can continue to add new guests to your table through the online registration page until September 14, 2020.
After September 14, you can add new guests to your table by emailing the name of the guest(s) to firstname.lastname@example.org
Substitute Guests: You may substitute guests for those who cancel any time up to the day before the event. Please register these guests online through September 11, 2020 and email us any guest cancellations at email@example.com.
Please call or send a pre-event reminder to your guests 1-2 days before the breakfast.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
VERY Important Note: If you have filled your table, please don’t stop inviting or recruiting more guests!
There are always last minute changes and one of your guests may not be able to come that day after all. And, we can always expand give you another table, or place your extended guests at a nearby table with other delightful guests. Please keep spreading the word about our Breakfast!
Homes First will support your outreach by sharing event communications with you and your guests, including:
Homes First will email your guest list about two weeks before the event to make sure we have everything right.
Homes First will send out a confirmation email to all registered guests prior to the event. The guest confirmation will include all important event information, like directions, timing and parking.
Homes First will mail thank you notes to all guests. We’d love to have you join us to write those notes if you are available. This happens on the same day of the event from 1-4pm in our office. We provide beverages & snacks!
Homes First will send a sample thank you note that we hope you will find helpful so you can ALSO thank your table guests directly.
Homes First will also provide you with information to encourage your invitees who are not able to attend to make a donation in lieu of attendance. Your invitees that are not able to attend can still make a significant impact in the lives of our tenants by making an gift on our online donation page.
Just in case you have these questions but were too shy to ask:
Q: Do I have to register myself as a guest?
A: Yes please! Although we have you as a table host, it would make the final count easier if you included yourself in the registration. Its also good practice in case your guests have any questions about the process.
Q: How many guests can be seated at my table?
A: Unlimited! We do ask that you fill a virtual table of eight, so you will need to fill your table with seven guests and yourself. This year we are unlimited with space - so please feel free to invite as many as you'd like.
We will send you a list of your registered guests closer to the Heroes for Housing Breakfast.
Q: Can I sign up to be a table host/hero for more than one table?
A: Yes! Just let us know the number of tables you will fill for the event.
Q: Will there be a keynote speaker?
A: No. We chose to give more time to our tenants and presenters at our event. We find that approach is a more effect way to share our mission and our message.
Q: Am I supposed to send my guests a registration link?
A: Yes. As a table captain, you register your guests after they confirm they are joining you. However, you can also ask your guests to register online at this link,
Q: How do my guests pay for the breakfast?
A: No one has to pay anything to attend the Heroes for Housing Breakfast. The event is free. However, the Breakfast is Homes First’s primary fundraising event and during the program everyone will be asked to make a gift by filling out their giving envelope. There are many options for giving, so there is a level or option that suits any wallet. Please make sure that your invited guests know that this is a fundraising breakfast with the goal of raising money to support Homes First’s programs and services.
Q: Someone in my network wants to know how much they would be expected to donate. Is there a minimum expected donation?
A: There is no minimum expected donation. Homes First has a goal of raising more than $85,000 for the breakfast. There are many levels and options for giving to Homes First, we are confident that there is a gift level for anyone that wants to give a gift. You can share this response with your potential guest, and also share with them your personal goals for your own table’s support.
Q: Why are you asking for my guest’s mailing addresses and phone numbers when I register them? Can’t I just give you mine?
A: While we send the majority our pre-breakfast communication and reminders via email, we will send gift acknowledgments and thank you letters via postal mail. We will also make a thank you phone call after the breakfast. If you don’t have a physical address or phone number for your guest,you might consider asking them to register themselves. We will never share or sell you or your guests contact information.
Q: Are the gifts made by my friends who cannot attend the Breakfast connected to my table?
A: Absolutely, if we know that your friend is connected to you! If you have friends, family, or co-workers that make a gift in-lieu of attendance, make sure they put your name in the comment field or indicate it in the mailed check, so we can connect the gift to you. You can also email email@example.com with your friends’ name and we will make sure any donations they make are connected to your table.
Q: How can I see who I have already registered for my table?
A: Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you the list of guests you have already registered. Closer to the breakfast we will send a guest list to each table hero so you can make sure the list is accurate and make any changes that might be needed. Sorry, we do not have a way for you to see your registered guests online at this time. We are working on it!!
Q: Can I make an annual pledge and pay it monthly?
A: Absolutely! We would also gladly welcome you to our League of Housing Heroes! Gifts can be paid on a monthly basis, please just indicate on the giving envelope that you would like your gift to be paid in monthly installments. Guests will need to provide their credit envelope information on the giving envelope they receive at the breakfast and indicate monthly payments. Homes First will charge the provided envelope monthly over 12 months.
What to Expect on the Day of the Event
Many table heroes are eager and at times anxious to learn what their responsibilities are at the breakfast. You don’t need to memorize anything. We will send it to you and have it waiting for you when you check in on September 16.
Doors Open at 7:30 am
We start our event with a networking opportunity as soon as the doors open.
Check in at the registration table to receive your name tag which will have your table number printed on it. Your table hero package including giving envelopes for your guests and a check list for you will be at your table.
Find your table – each name tag has the table number printed on it – and ‘make it yours’!
Greet your guests and have a wonderful time!
Enjoy the time before the program – take a picture with your guests and share it on social media; grab a coffee; mingle.
During the Program
When prompted from the stage during the program by our presenter, you will pass out the giving envelopes to the guests at your table.
NOTE: If one or more of your guests could not come, please send the giving envelope to them with an ‘I missed you note’. We will include a few blank envelopes and sticky notes in your packet.
You may also write the note during the Breakfast, stick it onto the giving envelope (don’t seal it!) and put it back into the Table Hero packet and Homes First will send it for you.
Our emcee will give clear instructions for giving steps.
Please make sure that your guests fill in your name under ‘table hero’ on the giving envelope and their credit card information or include their check.
Remind your guests to have their gifts matched by their employer! If guests brought a matching gift form, tell them to enclose it in the giving envelope.
Gather all completed giving envelopes, with checks or credit envelope information and possibly matching gift forms and place in the large envelope.
Close the large envelope and hold on to it. There will be designated staff members collecting your envelopes as you exit right at 9:00am when the breakfast program ends. Please do NOT leave the table until the envelope has been picked up from your table and please do NOT walk away with the envelope.
Thank you for your support!
Please use our templates and ideas here as you see fit. Call, text, email, Facebook, Evite – use a combination, use them all! Tell them you are a Homes First supporter, partner, volunteer, or donor. Tell them how much they’ll enjoy the breakfast and why it’s important to provide our supports and programs to family, adults with developmental disabilities, Veterans, youth and so many more!
You can edit and personalize them as you wish. You know your network better than we do – share your story and your reasons for being involved. We just want to give you a head start.
We can do this! 30 Tables of eight and raising $135,000 - be a part of the solution.
Celebration and Awards
Each year, after our Heroes for Housing Breakfast, we have a PARTY to celebrate the impact YOU have helped us achieve in our community and to recognize three of our Real Community Heroes for the work they have done in the last 12 months to make it possible for more people to have safe, healthy, and affordable homes.
Official invitations go out after our breakfast but please mark your calendar now so you can join us at the Governor’s mansion.
October 24, 2020 5:00pm – 7pm.
Registration will be required as all attendees must show proof of I.D. and be ‘on the list’!!
Hope to see you and your guest there to celebrate the people in our community – like you – who are Real Community Heroes!