Wednesday, October 21, 2009

And Furthermore...

Why does everything have all these fundraisers?

Between the actual classroom and the PTO, the school sends something home every week. See my previous post for those details.

For soccer, there was cookie dough to sell. Ten dollars for a 2 pound tub of cookie dough. No one had any idea when the cookie dough would be in so many people who might have bought some didn't. Let's not mention that 2 pound for $10 is not a deal. I can buy a 5 pound tub of cookie dough at Sam's for about $6-7. So if we have to raise money, in addition to paying registration fees, what are the fees for?

I also have to put in a dig for soccer pictures. Not only were they taken on the other side of the world from where we were parked and where the game was going to be played (and I mean it took about 10-12 minutes walking to get over there), we had to pay shipping for the pictures! Granted, they did mail the pictures to our house, but the cost of postage was less than what I was charged for shipping. Think they'll issue me a credit for the difference?

Then for dance class, we received something that can only be described as c-r-a-p. Gourmet dips and muffin mixes for $9-10. Not only were the products completely unappealing, but we were to add shipping to the orders as well! It honestly looked like someone's direct sale business who was cutting a piece of their profits in return for the sales. And I do want to support the things my girls are doing, but I could not make myself buy anything. Maybe next time I can suggest that I give everyone catalogs of my direct sale business and see if I can make a profit. I'll even eat the cost of shipping! How's that for service?

The following week at dance, we were given another brochure of things to sell which was more of the standard fundraising items like wrapping paper for $12, plastic cups of 14 gummy bears for $8, etc. Still crap, but I could tolerate buying a thing or two to support the dance school. Lest anyone misunderstand me, I do pay tuition every month for the girls to take dance. I am paying for costumes for recitals to be held in December and June. (Costumes are $55 each and my girls need a total of 6.) In fact, the last invoice had a charge of $14 for "recital tights". So, what exactly, are we fundraising for?

Monday, I got a call from The Optimist Club wanting me to buy their coupon book for $39.95. That is actually a good deal. Tons of buy 1, get 1 coupons for places in the area: Bowling, the jump house, save $10 at the vet, Sonic, the coffee place Brian and I like.

It would be so much easier on the parents especially, since truth be told, we are the ones that end up buying all this crap to support soccer and dance and school, if they just sold candy like the old days. You know, baseball candy. You can go door-to-door and someone can support you right then and there without commiting to a long term relationship. I sold candy bars in high school for my youth group to pay my way on a mission trip to Mexico ($75.00), youth camp ($275) and had spending money leftover. The candy bars were $.50 each and we got a quarter profit. Brian could have sold so much candy in the middle of this outage like he is. But no. All we have to offer is wrapping paper and snowman coasters. I understand why. The organizations have to buy the candy in advance and they don't have the cash to do that. The "ordering" thing requires no outlay of cash, no tracking down people who took a box of candy, but didn't pay for it or return it. It's easier in the short term, but I think you lose sales.

I'm beginning to understand the meaning of the phrase "tapped out".


kgeverett said...

I'm with you sister.... I call the fundraiser thing from Kacie's school the "Catalog of Crap" honestly, I don't mind the overpriced cookie dough. We use the stuff, and they make a good profit off of it at Kylie's school, but wrapping paper, and 2 ounces of nuts for $15, or better yet, a coffee mug for $28 in the "Catalog of Crap"... I pay nearly $6000 a year in property taxes... the school gets a lot of my money already.

shannon said...

On the school thing - don't forget all the 'free' money homeschoolers give the districts!

good rant! You know me, I agree with everything you said and have yet to see how I'm warping my kids by not letting all these other people determine what I'm going to do with my time and money! Love ya!

McDowell Family said...

My kid is selling popcorn tins...for $50!!! I guess I can't add you to the list to buy one, right!

By the way - I didn't buy their school pictures. Micah's 1st school picture and I told them I would rather give them the $20 to spend at Toys R Us than buy one 5x7 of a crappy picture!

Greg said...

I think that a great fundraiser is one where you get what you pay for right then and there. We as a softball league may go to Sam's ans buy the assortment of candy bars and sell those. It is easy and fast and is immediately gratifing for the buyer. I agree that fundraisers are not much fun but from my point of view they are a necessary thing at times. The softball league wouldn't be able to as much if we did not have them.

brian said...

Yeah... but that's the instant gratification way to do it. I wouldn't -- and I doubt Georgia would have -- mind it if that's the way the things went. But instead, they give you a picture of something that costs way more than it's worth, no indication of when you'll be able to actually hold it in your hands (because they have to wait for everyone to turn in their papers before they place the order), and the assurance that at some point in the future -- we promise! -- it'll probably show up. No thanks.

I think, next time, we'll take the money we might've spent on that stuff and buy candy at Sam's, then turn in the profits.

Anonymous said...

I told my kids a long time ago, just throw the fund raiser stuff in the trash...I'm not buying ANYTHING and I will not take you to ask other people to buy that junk, either. I tell everyone else, "Um, well, I guess I can bring all 4 of my kids fund raiser stuff to you for you to support???" If that isn't hint enough, I simply say, No!