Sunday, April 13, 2014

GFAF Event FAQ ~ Why We Do What We Do

People have asked us how we choose an area to plan an event in. They have also asked us how we choose the date or what motivates us to hold them in multiple areas. So this post is to give you an idea of what we are all about and will give you a glimpse into the life of a gluten & allergen free event planner.

How do we choose an area?

 There is quite a bit of research that takes place before an event is put together.
1. We receive an event request in a location either from a support group or company.
2. An assessment of potential demographic numbers are done based on population and community support.
3. If the event request was not made by a support group, then we contact them first.
4. An assessment of gluten/allergen free options locally available is done.

How do we choose the date?

 As you probably know, there are way more events happening all over the country. We have to keep up with their schedule as well as plan our own about a year ahead. It can be extremely tricky when you add in variables like religious observances, holidays, and conflicting festivals/events already planned for an area. It can often times become impossible to avoid any conflict at all. In that case, we pick the lesser of evils and move forth making notes of changes to make in planning for the next year.

What motivates us to hold events in multiple locations?

 To be honest, when we first went gluten free, we decided it would be great to have a large event that was affordable for families. Nikki could not afford to attend the national conferences as a single mother. So, our utmost goal is to be able to provide affordable events for families. We are about having quality over quantity.

What makes our events different?

 Our vision has remained that a gluten/allergen free event should really be about health and wellness. That meant instead of having 50 bakeries represented, we would be selective and have only a few. Let's be honest, how many sweets can you eat in a day before you feel like losing your lunch? We decided rather than have 15 pizza vendors, we would have a couple, and if we could find healthy more savory options, we would try to include them. Being selective and caring about what types of food are offered makes us very different.

 We added a few more important elements like focusing on local businesses and start ups that make our nation's economy stronger. Bringing people who are experts to educate and raising funds for charities that need support has remained a focus. The more supported charities, like research that already receives an outpouring of support from national resources, do not meet with our mission. Our largest donation to date has been to Camp Weekaneatit in Georgia, because it is a summer camp exclusively for children who medically need gluten free

We also decided early on that "gluten removed" items would not be available at our events. If we would not feed it to our own family, we will not feed it to attendees. Remaining devoted to a safe environment is way more important to us than sponsorship.

Most importantly, rather than charge an already over-burdened segment of consumers who are already over-charged at every twist and turn, we felt it was important to offer as many Free perks as possible. You will never get charged $59.99 for a video series of speakers from a live event on our site. If we charge for any service or product it will merely be the cost to produce that item and nothing more.

Even the admission for an event goes to paying costs for that event to happen, not to make a huge profit . We don't believe that making a lot of money off illness is ethical whether you are an insurance company or an event company.

Hopefully that clears up a whole lot of questions you may have had. If you have any more, please contact Nikki Everett at