We know that there is a lot of anxiety out there, not just at ACE, but at all nonprofits around the world, about how this global crisis will affect their bottom lines.

Let’s first start with any currently scheduled end of year events, banquets, or breakfasts that might already be on the books.

Your contract with your event venue may have a clause allowing you to cancel your event in the case of a declared national emergency. If your contract does NOT have this clause, you may be able to “postpone” your event to later date and avoid losing your deposit.

Vendors may not be willing to refund your whole payment but they may be willing to offer a credit for a future event.

Rather than completely cancel a fundraiser, consider moving your event to an online platform. This helps you keep that sponsor money, while also ensures you practice social distancing.

Whatever you decide, everyone is in the same boat right now. Contact your sponsors to let them know that you are postponing or moving your event online. Funds should be held unless a refund is requested.

For a postponement: “We will honor your sponsorship at the later date. As soon as we reschedule, we will contact you directly.”

For online event: “We have moved our event online! Look for us to tag <your company> in all our social media and please help us promote this important fundraiser.”

If you were planning to award scholarships, honor outstanding mentors, or present any other types of awards, it is still appropriate to do so. Simply move the recognition online or include it in your postponed event programming. If fundraising allows, students will appreciate scholarship awards even more this year!


No matter which course of action you take with your event, it is important to keep moving forward. We recommend avoiding the word “cancelled” and sticking with “postponed” or “virtual”. In the coming days, we will post example of successful online events.

Check back often!