Ten Creative Ways to Say "Thank You"

to Your Supporters & Volunteers

Who deserves more gratitude than your supporters and volunteers? These ideas are simple, creative, and don’t cost much. A little recognition goes a long way!

Post Date: Sep 27 2023

Who deserves more gratitude than your supporters and volunteers? Their enthusiasm for your cause (and hunger for premium snacks and treats!) makes your program or nonprofit go ‘round throughout the year.

While any time is a good time to show thanks, we know it goes a little further around the holidays. If you’re looking for ways to show your gratitude for your team, your volunteers, or your supporters and donors, we have some creative ideas to stand out and show your appreciation.

These ideas are simple, creative, and don’t cost much. A little recognition goes a long way, and if you’re trying to stash away funds for the winter and spring ahead, you’ll find these tips helpful for saying ‘thank you’ without pulling from your hard-earned reserves.

10 Creative Ways To Thank Your Supporters & Volunteers

Volunteer Hall of Fame

1. Post a Hall of Fame

Whether it’s a plaque, a cork board, framed photos, a web page, or your group’s Facebook page, calling out your top supporters by name is a wonderful way to show your appreciation. Consider including the length of time they’ve been involved with your group, a personal quote, or a special message of thanks. You can also feature a Volunteer of the Month or a Donor of the Month. It’s an easy and engaging way to place your top helpers in the public eye.

“We want to shine the spotlight on the amazing talents of ______! They helped us raise money to keep our programs thriving, and always with a smile on their face. Their sweet disposition pairs perfectly with the sweet treats we sell during our fundraiser!”

VIP Reserved Space

2. Create VIP Privileges

Nothing says “we appreciate you” like VIP benefits. Designate a VIP parking space for volunteers at your event, or assign VIP front-row seating for gatherings. If you’re holding virtual events, give your volunteers a chance to take the online stage with stories to share. VIP privileges are an excellent, no-cost or low-cost way to thank those who have earned a special place in your organization.

3. Make a Tribute

Using either photos or videos, gather clips from your favorite moments throughout the year and piece them together in a tribute to your community. You can create an online photo album using platforms like Shutterfly where members can access your photo collection with a special link. Or, you can use a tool like Tribute, which makes it easy to collect video clips from your volunteers and supporters, and then arrange them into an emailable film montage.

4. Create Special Awards

Channel your inner crafter with awards that speak to the good your volunteers and supporters are doing in the community. Come up with contest categories for earning awards, such as ‘Snack Master’ for the person who sells or buys the most snack mixes, or ‘Amazing Raiser’ for the person who raises the most money during your fundraiser.

Then create one-of-a-kind awards by hand, using items from the craft store or dollar store. Your efforts will go a long way when your volunteers or donors receive awards that are tailored to their special gifts or talents.

Hand written card with pet

5. Send Handwritten Thank You Notes

A personal thank you note always makes the list. Offering individual recognition goes a long way in retaining the support of your top volunteers and givers. Choose a card that represents your group, programs, or community, and consider supporting a local artisan by opting for handmade or hand-designed cards. We all love getting special notes in the mail during the holidays!

Pro Tip: Consider including a gift card to a coffee shop or a place that you know your volunteers love to frequent.

6. Film a Thank You Video

Have someone on your team who’s handy with videos? You don’t have to get fancy -- even a short video from a mobile phone can help to get your message across. With easy online tools like Vimeo and ClipChamp, editing film clips is also a doable task for even the less technically-inclined. You can add text layovers with testimonials, volunteer and donor names, or your special thank you message.

7. Say Happy Birthday & Anniversary

Keep a calendar of your volunteers’ and donors’ birthdays, and send your well-wishes on their special days. You can mail a hand-written card, post on social media, text, share in a newsletter, or pick up the phone for an old-fashioned call.

People’s volunteering and giving anniversaries are important to remember, too. Follow up each year with a big ‘thank you,’ and share how your organization has grown in the last 12 months (with their generous help!).

terri lynn gift tower

8. Send Impact Reports

Let your community know how their time and money is making a difference. List the programs you’ve been able to support, or the projects you’ve been able to complete because of their generous giving. Consider including your volunteers and supporters when emailing or mailing Impact Reports, or create infographics with visually-appealing statistics.

For instance, if your fundraiser is purchasing school supplies, you can create a graph showing the materials purchased and the number of students you’ve helped. You can send these in email newsletters, or share on social media groups and pages.

9. Give Media Recognition

A little public recognition goes a long way. It’s generally affordable to run a one-time ad in the local newspaper thanking volunteers, sponsors and top supporters. You can also create a page on your website dedicated to saying thanks, or include a section in your newsletter. On social media, you can publish a post with all the names to say one big thank you, or deal out a handful of posts highlighting individuals who have made a big difference.

10. Share a Survey

Show your do-gooders that you value their opinions by including them in a survey. You can ask about their favorite events of the year, what kinds of celebrations they enjoy, or things they’d like to update or change. The added benefit is that you also gain insights into the ways you can thank and retain your top volunteers and supporters. Let them tell you what they appreciate!

A little recognition goes a long way!

We Want To Say Thank You, Too!

We know that connecting with your donors and volunteers requires creativity, optimism, and drive. Your efforts to do good continue to inspire us, too! We’re grateful to the fundraising groups who choose to partner with Terri Lynn year after year to reach and exceed their money-raising goals.

And if you’re new to fundraising with Terri Lynn, we invite you to hop on a call with one of our Fundraising Experts to learn how we can help your group thrive during this wonderful season of thanks — and all throughout the year!

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