Whether at a carnival, benefit concert, or other special event, participants will probably lose or forget things. Just ask me — I left my sweater behind at the “Free for All” series of concerts on the UC Berkeley campus just last weekend. (The late summer weather was too hot to even contemplate the existence of sweaters!)
I knew perfectly well that leaving the sweater on the concert hall seat was my own fault. And yet, irrationally, its loss made me sad enough to feel less excited about the event overall.
But wait! There’s a happy ending: The efficiency with which the event volunteers rounded up my sweater and later made it available to me were so impressive that I have to write a blog about it.
Here’s what they did, which your nonprofit may well want to emulate, in order to turn other sad faces into happy ones:
1) Assign volunteers to check the venues for lost items after each concert.
2) Have those volunteers drop off lost items at the information booth.
3) Display a big sign on the information booth saying “LOST AND FOUND” so that participants could easily find where to look.
4) For straggler items (like my sweater) that didn’t make it to the booth by day’s end, designate a location where items would be kept, and a person to call to ask about them.
Your event may not be as big as the Cal one, but if it is, you may want to take the added step that they did: Draw up a written list of all the lost and found items, so that when people like me call, saying, “Um, it’s a black sweater, I can’t remember the brand,” they can easily read down the list of descriptions instead of pawing through a pile of stuff.
Soon, I hope to be reunited with said sweater.