Ok, so it has been a very long time since I ranted about stuff in my own home town… today, it is grabbing me by the neck. I have tossed and turned about this. I have Prayed over it. I have sat on it for long enough.
A few weeks ago, my husband wrote a thing on Facebook complaining about the constant road blocks in the middle of town. Down here, a road block is where kids stand in a busy intersection of town with buckets and beg for money for this or that – Youth Sports, Mission Trips, Summer Camps, Uniforms, whatever the cause might be,. I stayed out of the argument on there… however:
I, too, take issues with this!
#1 – It is NOT safe! We tell our kids not to play in the road, then we are going to drop them off at a busy intersection so they can beg for money??? Seriously, the one that first came up with this idea isn’t the smartest person in the world. The laziest most certainly, but I will get into that in a second.
#2 – It is stinking lazy and it does not set a good example for our children! People are complaining about the number of people “living off the Government” well of course they are! The general public has taught their children at a young age how to beg and then even congratulate them for it! So-and-so collected the most money, lets give them a trophy! How about giving so-and-so a trophy for EARNING the most money? That means so much more!
#3 – Get off your high horse and quit expecting something for nothing! If I want to donate money to something, I can find that something and give it some money! I don’t need sad-faced children begging me for it with their little cardboard signs every single time I get stopped by a red light or pull up to a stop sign. You do NOT deserve my money just because you are going to the play offs, or because you have more kids than you can afford, or because you won a certain level of something and now need to go to the next level. You get money by doing a service or offering something in return!! It is a very simple process: work and earn money, sell something and raise money!
–Am I saying that Parents should be expected to pay 100% out of pocket for all the things their kids do? Heck no! I agree that kids NEED organized play – sports, music, dance, gymnastics, hobbies, Scouts, whatever they happen to be into. I agree that all kids should be given the chance to do these things regardless of how much money their parents have! However, I do not agree with the WAY some people are getting money. Have a fundraiser… yes, we hate them… yes, they take time… yes, they take work… no, you can’t just drop you child off and expect it to get done – however, they work!
Some ideas for fundraisers that don’t cost a ton (if any) money:
1. Do a car wash! If you make it donation only, you will make money!
2. Go to your local grocery store (or some other busy place where people will be inside for a while) and start meeting people as they park their cards. Be armed with Windex and paper towels (no water hook up needed) and offer to clean their windshield for a donation. We did this when I was young and made a killing! Be sure you have permission from the store first!
3. Have a bake sale… for just a couple dollars you can bake a cake! Have every member of your group, team whatever bake cakes and sell them. You can even offer a local store signage rights (their name on the signs) if they want to donate the plastic bags or x-dollars for cooking supplies). You are offering advertising for said company, not just asking them to give products or money. Most Walgreen’s and CVS stores will donate snacks (Little Debbie type things) and Ziploc bags locally!
4. Host a talent show, parents night out, beauty pageant, race, trash fashion show, or something else and charge admission for people to watch. You can also charge an entry fee to help cover prizes and earn money. Don’t forget about the concession stand! Plus, contact your local Kohls Kohls Cares for Kids will send a few people out to help with the event AND donate money to the cause! Why? Because it looks great on their taxes and is fabulous PR for them.
5. Host a festival – people who sell things love to go places and people like to buy their wares. Either charge a small table fee or request 10% of all profits. If you are a Church, Local Youth Sports Team, or School, you have the location already!
*There are many other ways to earn money for your children’s interests besides teaching them to beg!