Table Host Guide and Instructions
Table Hosts like you are a key strategy to our Annual Fundraising Dinner. Thank you for your advocacy of our mission and willingness to serve. We couldn't do it well without you!
This page will serve you with:
- Understanding the purpose and big picture of our Annual Fundraising Dinner
- Knowing the primary activities of a Table Host
- Where to get help if you need it.
The Purpose & Goals of Our Annual Fundraising Dinner
Our Annual Fundraising Dinner achieves several key objectives for the ministry:
- Invite and encourage new champions to the Love INC mission and vision. Our goal for this event is 225 guests.
- Raise funds for the work of the ministry. Our goal for this event is $60,000.
- Build community. Something special happens when we gather in person, together, to hear about what the Lord is doing and calling us to in the work of this ministry.
- Personal growth in you! We have seen over and over in the work of Love INC that when we stretch ourselves to serve, the Lord grows us. We hope you will grow in your understanding of the Love INC cause and dependence on Him!
The Role of A Table Host
There are five key elements to table hosting:
Spend time in prayer over the weeks leading up to the Dinner. Pray for the needs that will be shared weekly in the Table Host email updates and focus on how God is calling you to reach out to others to invite and encourage them to attend the Dinner and get to know the vital mission of Love INC.
Invite your friends, associates and acquaintances to be your guests and to sit with you at your table(s). Ideally, your guests will be new to the Love INC ministry. Tables seat 8 to 10. Don't worry about going over or under; your job is to pray, invite, and leave the results to the Lord. Love INC staff will make sure unfilled tables get filled with un-hosted guests or combine tables.
You are serving as a host. Plan to arrive early (5:45pm for prayer) so that you can welcome your guests and show them your table. Work with Love INC staff for any needs that may arise. When possible, lead discussion at dinner around your experience with the Love INC ministry. Collect gift envelopes for your table at the end of the evening.
(optional): Sponsor the cost of the table, or secure a sponsor for the evening.
During the week immediately after the event, thank your guests for attending by sending a quick email, text message, or by speaking with them. Love INC will also follow up with all attendees, but a personal message from the person who invited them demonstrates care and purpose. Direct your guests to appropriate Love INC staff if they have additional questions about the ministry.
How To Invite Guests
Most people respond best to a personal, multi-channel approach. For example, consider sending an email invite with a follow-up phone call. Or send a personal invitation via US Mail (see Love INC staff for our professionally designed invites) with an in-person follow up.
- US Mail: Send a physical copy of the invitation. Invitations and envelopes are available from Love INC staff or dinner coordinator.
- Phone Call/Text: Personal phone calls and texts (avoid group texts) are very effective.
- Email: Use Love INC-provided software or graphics to send email invites. Email is best combined with another follow up method, as it is not unusual for emails to get lost or hit spam filters.
- 8-6 Weeks: Begin inviting guests.
- 4 Weeks: Continue inviting guests AND watch for ongoing communication from Love INC staff.
- 2 Weeks: Check in with your guests to ensure they are still attending and add any last minute guests.
- 1 Week: Consider sending an introductory email to everyone at your table and provide connection points about who will be sitting together if they don't already know each other. Make sure your guests get any questions answered about the evening.
- 1-2 Days: Love INC will send a reminder email about the dinner to all on the guest list.
- Post Event: Love INC will follow up with you and your guests to celebrate goals and garner feedback.
What to Expect That Evening
- Plan to arrive at 5:30-5:45pm: Table hosts arrive at 5:30-5:45; check in, get your name tag, locate your table and familiarize yourself with the venue before the doors open to guests at 6:00pm. We will pray together as a group around 5:50 at the rear of the auditorium.
- Greet Your Guests: Do your best to greet your guests as they arrive and make sure they check in at the registration table. Welcome them to the venue by showing them your table(s) and introduce them to other table-guests they may not know.
- Dinner: Dinner runs to about 7:40. Enjoy dinner with your guests, and do your best to lead conversation about your story and involvement with Love INC. No pressure here - relax and share as you have opportunity.
- Founders Award: This part of our program recognizes a long standing volunteer with the ministry.
- Keynote Presentation: Our keynote speaker is the Founder of the Love INC movement, Dr. Virgil Gulker! He will speak for approximately 20 minutes about the work of the ministry
- Testimonials: This is the highlight of the evening. The testimonials provide first-hand account of how Love INC brings value to those we serve: churches, clients, volunteers, and supporters.
- Invitation to Partner: This is a big point to the evening: the invitation to support the ministry financially, as well as to express interest in volunteering or participating in some way.
- Conclusion: Love INC will follow up with you in the coming weeks to get your feedback and testimony on the evening.
How many sit at a table?
Tables can seat 8 to 10. If you have more, we will provide you with an extra table and your tables will be next to each other. If you don't fill your tables, don't worry, we can combine tables or add other who need hosts to your table.
What if I can't fill my table?
It happens! Don't worry. Un-hosted and last minute guests get added to empty seats and/or we may combine two partially filled tables.
Can guests bring children/teens?
This is an adult only event.
Do I have to buy/sponsor a table if I am a table host?
While we welcome the sponsorship of tables by table hosts, it is not required. We have an assortment of sponsors who do not bring guests and use their sponsorships for unsponsored tables. You are also welcome to seek out a business or other person who might like to sponsor a table. Let us know if you would like sponsor materials!
What is the dress code?
We embrace a wide demographic who attend our dinner. Generally speaking, we promote the event as "business casual."
What time should table hosts arrive?
What time should my guests arrive?
Guests should arrive no earlier than 6pm. The event starts at 6:30pm. Guests may notice that the table is pre-set with salads and rolls. Please wait until the opening prayer to begin eating.
- Electronic Invitations: You should have an email with access to electronic graphics and invitations. If not, please contact us...
- Paper Invitations: Paper invitations and envelopes are available. They work very effectively in person, but also can be mailed. Contact us is if you need them!
- Direct Registration Link: You can tell anyone to register right from our home page at LILC.org or you can send them to LILC.org/dinner to register.
- Dinner Updates: Watch for a weekly Table Host email so you can continue to provide support through prayer and stay informed with updates.