Charity gala, the Anglo-Saxon formula imported to France to collect donations

Charity gala, the Anglo-Saxon formula imported to France to collect donations

A long black dress, elegant but discreet, a pair of beige pumps to contrast and refine the leg, a bun and anything but flashy jewelry to “shed light on the charity that brings us together”. Here is the ideal outfit to adopt for a charity gala that Solenne, a beauty influencer, presents to her 750,000 TikTok subscribers, a mobile application for sharing short videos. As is often the case on social networks, influence rhymes with trend and, in recent years, charity galas (dinners, concerts, auctions) have been on the rise among charitable organizations.

And for good reason. The records keep piling up: 228,000 euros raised during the Bonnes Fées gala, an association of former Miss France against breast cancer, gathered in the luxurious Peninsula hotel in Paris; 810,000 euros for the Princess Margot (fight against pediatric cancer) and Vision du monde (help for children in extreme poverty) associations during the 2022 edition of the Hospices de Beaune auction. 7.3 million viewers on France 2 to watch the Yellow Pieces gala at the Zénith in Paris. Tanguy André, 24 years old, participated in this concert event. He admits it bluntly, it was the casting (Blackpink, Pharrell Williams, Mika, Angèle, Vianney) that convinced him and his friend to get up at 5 a.m. “to queue in front of a Carrefour hypermarket (Partner brand of the Yellow Pieces, Editor’s note) and get tickets for 15 euros.”

However, on the evening of the gala, he surprised himself by becoming interested in charitable issues, discovering the actions carried out with hospitalized children and the testimonies of the beneficiary families. A few minutes later, when a “huge piggy bank” came to him in the stands, he gave. Naturally. “I slipped a ticket,” he smiles. Usually I don’t like to make donations when I don’t know where my money is going to go, but now everything became more concrete. If I can have a good time and make memories, while helping others, it all comes together. »

Compensate for the drop in funding

Offering an experience to donors to reach a wider audience: this model also appeals to more modest associations, such as the Union for Children, which organized its first gala dinner in the sumptuous setting of the royal abbey of Fontevraud ( Maine-et-Loire). On the occasion of International Children’s Rights Day, last November 21, the 180 people present were able to hear the testimonies of adolescents placed in child welfare, interact with educational teams, and enjoy the meal prepared by star chef Thibaut Ruggeri with the help of young people from the association.

Thierry Rombout, general director of the Union for Children, is delighted with this event. He believes that this collection of donations demonstrates the need, for the associative sector, to find new resources in the face of constantly reducing public funding. “The departments only give us what is strictly necessary to function. However, my teams want to bring extra soul, offer activities, carry out projects, but they no longer have the means. »

The only solution, then, consists of calling for donations and developing an awareness strategy, as explained by Victor Vielfault, director of communications and patronage of the association. With the elected officials of the department and the region on the one hand, and with the general public on the other hand, a breeding ground for small or medium-sized donors.

But the main target of the gala remains that of major donors, these companies capable of “donating thousands of euros to ensure the sustainability of the association” and with whom the Union for Children wishes to build a network, establish ” skills sponsorships and partnerships promoting the integration of young people”.

It is in fact the quality of the network that ensures the success of these evenings. Dalia Dagher chairs the Les Toits de Beyrouth association, which provides financial, social and educational support to Lebanese families in need. She often organizes fundraisers in Paris: “For our donors, these events allow us to cultivate the strong bond that unites the Lebanese diaspora and the motherland,” she emphasizes, “but also to meet diverse profiles who have common interests. believe in the power of the gift. » And in this, social networks can do wonders.

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