zillion plus fund raisers?

justmetooNovember 6, 2009

I'm curious how everyone deals with all the fund raisers the kids have going when you have children in multi schools?

Bitty One (DD9) goes to one school, GS7 goes to another district 40 miles away and GS8 yet a different school 60 miles away. I'm being swamped with request for purchases and donations.

So far since mid August between them all there has been Cub Scouts, Choir, Y-kids, the schools in general with 'buy us books', support our sports, 'we need a new playground', and on and on it goes.

My older kids never had all this, maybe one during the school year. I don't mind helping out, especially with Bitty One's school and groups, but Gsons both also expect it.

I guess I got myself into this when I pushed ex DIL to volunteer and get involved. She did, big time. Once DD28 caught wind I was buying/donationing to both DD9 and GS8 she now expects the same everytime GS7 has something.

So how rude would I be if I just handed the 2 GSs a check for like $200 each and told them to spread it out over the year for their fund raisers and keep or donate to somewhere else whatever they 'bought' with my money.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


I think that is a great solution plus a generous one. I only buy one thing a year from a short list of kids. I don't tell the parents that but I'm only going to buy one box of cookies, or one gift wrap or one book then I'm done.

For my son, DH and I decided that we would not buy in to every fundraiser at his school. We make one healthy donation a year and make sure the principal and the head of the fundraising comittee knows it is from us. We buy tickets to various events, DS's school has large, nice fundraising events that are fun to go to. But buying cookies, candy, books, this, that and the other thing continually we no longer do. Two exceptions, if DS needs books then I will buy them through Scholastic if I can so the school gets credit. Also, we donate classroom materials to DS's classroom by following a wish list sent by the teachers. That's it.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

My son's middle school has the best fundraiser! It's called "Just Write a Check" and that's all it is. The PTA president gives one speech at 'Back to School Night', the parents all (or almost) write one check that goes straight to the PTA (no deductions for the fundraising company and no junk), and nobody has to run an auction, sell wrapping paper or candy, or jump through any other hoops.

When my oldest was in middle school and the youngest was in elementary, I'd just write a modest check for the cause and decline the junk they were selling. If you figure the cause got 50% of the sales proceeds your check could be half the amount and do just as much good.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

SD10 just brought home her second fundraiser packet since school started 2 1/2 months ago. She sold nothing in the first one, which was a coupon book. $40 for a coupon book to get discounts on local businesses.... really? Did ANYONE buy one of those?

Yesterday, she brought home a sees candy sale sheet. She has brought home at least 6 book order forms... and escrip sends me an email every other day.

Fundraisers are a pain... I'd rather send the school a check and let them get 100% of the money they say they desperately need.... and I could do without the useless crap that costs 2x what it costs at the store. Occasionally, they have an item that is cute & unique enough I will buy it, but $12 for $3 of wrapping paper? I would write the school PTA a check donation and call it a day. (same goes for baseball, and all those other fundraisers.... if you don't want girl scout cookies, don't buy them. The troop will accept a cash donation, which is gonna be more than the percentage they get from the sales.)

If you want/need what is being sold, order it. If you don't need/want anything, give 'em a check for $10 and say "I really don't need anything but here's a little something for your school/group" and leave it at that. When schools/groups realize that a fundraiser is not profitable, they will look for a different one to use. There are a couple that are good, like the Sees Candy one.... that one saves me a trip to the mall.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Maybe it is going to sound awful but I almost never bought from fundraising. It is not to say that I do not donate, i donate for particular causes that i support, for example support people with AIDS, my donations are usally organized through religious institution that i belong to. I donate old clothes or can food or some money but again through religious intitution because I know where it is going to go.

DD's school didn't do much fundraising. Every once in awhile i would buy cookies or somehting but only if I happened to be there at the right moment.

DD participated in AIDs walks etc, I contributed to that. I do not believe i am obligated to donate or buy when i cannot or don't want to. i choose what to contribute to.

I do not support school sports, in fact i dislike school sports, and never want to pay for that. And i dislike boyscouts.

So you might want to pay for somehting you support, but only if you can afford it, if not then you don't have to. most people barelly scarp by paycheck to paycheck.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

just to add...not every child is obligated to participate in fund raising or bring any of that stuff home-like sheets of candies, or lists of books, or other junk, only kids who want to do it so they get a prize. kids sign up for it if they want to participate. maybe your kids feel like they are obligated to collect fund riasing, they are not.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


This has been going on for us.

DD goes to a very small private school. I feel like I HAVE to do her fundraisers. Well, I don't HAVE to, but they always have these competitions, like the class that sells the most wrapping paper gets an ice cream party, blah blah. The kids get super into it and I can't single her out, considering that there are only 15 in her class. (Although with tuition being over 16K this year---ACCCCK---why they need fundraisers is beyond me!)

What I do--I have her take it to my mom and my grandma, and my dad.

This yr SS was selling the SAME d*mn wrapping paper for his school at the same time DD was. It worked out okay, though, because he sold about $100 worth of stuff to his grandma on BM's side, and his aunt on that side, and to a neighbor at BM's house. DD sold about the same amount to my mom and grandma and dad.

So DH and I called it even and we got off the hook from buying from either of them this year!

Now DD is selling her own artwork---it can be turned into notecards or tote bags. It's actually VERY cool, and it's a fundraiser for the PTA so I don't mind. Plus, I am buying as Christmas gifts--I bought a set of notecards for my mom and grandma, and a tote bag w/DD's artwork on it for each, as well. WOOHOO.

SS's school is doing the same this month and DH and I will probably buy a set of notecards for him to give to my mom and grandma, as well.

I guess we are lucky in that SS and DD both have grandparents/extended family who like to buy from them---so it kind of lets DH and I off the hook a bit.

But some of the stuff is annoying. SS's school last yr sold CANDY BARS and we just said forget it. I was not about to take him around the neighborhood selling candy bars for $2.00!!!!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 11:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for ideas/solutions. I think I can guilt free do the checks to the boys and let their moms figure out how they divide it up between all they do. Think I'll mention this to great-gma too so she can also think about handling it differently than we have been.

It became an issue around here last evening when DH went to enter a check he sent (as he always does) to the Men's Mission for Thanksgiving meals. He saw several entries made out to different groups/schools and suggested I just do the 'send each grandkid a check for the year' thing.

It just seemed so much easier when the older kids were in school and they did stuff like breakfast with santa for a few dollars and halloween parties in the gym at 10cents a ticket. None of those type of events are held anymore, it's just 'here, go sale this'. Now it's things like our name engraved on a brick for the playground sidewalk for $125 a brick. That's partly why I wondered if a $200 check to each GS would seem too little or rude.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 11:42AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"That's partly why I wondered if a $200 check to each GS would seem too little or rude."

it is neither rude nor little. once again you are not OBLIGATED to buy anything.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 12:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I don't buy into the fundraisers. I don't remember who suggested it above, but I just donate cash. If kids approach me, I offer a buck or two. I have one cousin whose wife is constantly sending me emails from "johnny" (yeah right, the kid is 6) and asking if I can please help him by buying popcorn at $40 a tin (ha ha ha ha ha ha ha). I sent a check for $10 instead (bear in mind this is my half-cousins step-son who lives in another state selling the stuff). I never received a "got the check, thank you from Johnny" email (ha ha) so I don't respond at all now.

When I see Girl Scouts I usually buy one box of my favorites and donate $3-4 or so in cash for their troop. I remember when I was a GS we got something like $.10 per box for our troop. IMO, a total rip-off. And they are twice as expensive and half as good as they used to be.

I like the idea of using kids artwork for fundraisers. I'd buy something like that.

To answer the question, no I don't think it's rude or too little. I think it's very generous of you to give anything.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 12:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The only thing I ever buy is the girl scout cookies, so yummy in my tummy :)

All that other stuff is just crap. I hate it when other people (coworkers, clients, family) try to get you to buy their kids stuff. Its so awkward. So I refuse to be the go between for DD and put other people in that position, she can ask whoever she wants to buy stuff but I'm not going to do it for her.

I like that "Just Write A Check" idea, I'm going to bring it up.

OP, the $200 check idea is very nice and thoughtful.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 1:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

DS's elementary school did something cool. It's called a fun run. The kids run laps and the parents pledge a certain amount per lap. They have so much fun doing it! It's kind of like a carnival atmosphere where parents come and watch. All the money goes directly to the school and the kids get a t-shirt with boxes on the back to check off for each lap.

It's like paying my kid to exercise! LOL!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 1:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have a colleague who few years back collected money for her son, first to take some band trip and then for him to go to college. I am serious, not kidding, she did all kind of fundraising. she could not do it through work so she sent us private letters home, but still. I found it offensive.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 3:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I like the "Just Write a Check" idea too. That's closer to what we are doing and I'm going to suggest it at DS's school.

Want to hear a fundraising story? When DS was 5 he went to Pre-K at a small private school. This school had fundraising things all of the time. One was collecting the BoxTop cut outs and the class who collected the most was to be given a pizza party.

Well, after a few months the parents in DS's Pre-K class, the youngest kids in the school, decided to make a full out effort to win a party for our kids. We brought in tons of these boxtops. The little Pre-K class had such an untouchable lead that the school changed the rules!! The school extended the contest giving the other classes time to catch up. These 5 and 6 year olds had their victory stolen by the older kids for extra cash! When pizza party time came they had to be consoled since they thought they had won. Fundraisers, yechhh!

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 4:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ok here's my gripe with fundraisers .... not only do they have them every other month but the stuff is junk and expensive. (whatever)

Four years ago all the kids were in the same school all three sold stuff for the fundraiser ... new thing that year combine all the families on one page so they could earn a bigger "prize" ... great so 3 kids get one prize who thought of this bright idea but anyway ....

They turn their lists in the PTO combines the lists and hands it back to middle child who would/could lose his head if it wasn't attached ... the list disappears..... they went to mom's that weekend ... so I forgot all about it ...

6 weeks later the "stuff" needs to be picked up at school I got in pick 5 huge boxes of stuff .... with out a list the kids come home they don't want to deliver anything I don't know who bought what ... they don't know who bought what I call PTO ask her for a list she doesn't have one .... ok we do our best to figure out who got what .... we take all five boxes to every one they think they sold to ...... we did pretty good ...only had 10 things left out of 50 .... Call PTO tell her hey we couldn't deliver these so if anyone calls we have it just don't know where to deliver it.

The following week PTO sends a nasty letter home saying we are "stealing" the stuff and it needs to be returned to the school immediately or they would notify the police.

The following day I head in to school with the stuff .... tell the PTO lady this is the last time the kids will sell anything for this school there was no need for threats considering I called you twice in 10 days to ask if anyone had called about their stuff and told you we did not have a list to go by I had to work with a 7,8,10 year olds memory.

2 months later the kids come home with more fundraisers stuff .... they don't even ask if they can sell anything ... but hand it to me I wrote on all the forms ... we will not sell anything for this PTO. Here is a check for $20 and box of tissues.

Never heard from them again .... the kids do not even bring the stuff here they ask mom its on her if she lets them but we do not buy anything anymore.

the lists with very specific items on them drives me the most nuts.... orange post-its, white out, non-smelling dry erase markers no black. etc...

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 5:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

When my D was in HS, they stopped with useless sales of stuff.

1. The athletic teams did carwashes. Charged same as commercial ones near us. Come or not.

2. The chearleaders did a kid night. $5 for 1/ $8 for 2 kids, aged 4-9. Leave kids at school with the chearleader. Watch an old movie on big screan. Learn chears. One slice of pizza and soda. Parents get to go out. Everyone has fun. Most of the chear moms were there too to help out. Paid for new uniforms.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 7:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

As a former PTO President, Fundraiser, Treasurer and Secretary for both elem. and middle school and a Girl Scout leader I am too well versed in the trials of fundraising!!

After several years of dwindling 'crap' sales we switched to a Fun Run and a Hoop A Thon, where all the proceeds go to the school. Such a great way to do it! Prior to that I would usually send in money without purchasing the 'crap'. I could always find a way to buy the G.S. cookies though!!

I know we always liked the flat donations better, and we offered receipts so the benefactor could receive a tax write off. I think if you were to make out a check - and the $200 is very generous - to each grandson's school directly they would appreciate that more than were you to buy $200 of crap for which the school gets typically 40% of the sale.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2009 at 9:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think people still don't understand...Nobody is obligated to donate any money to public schools or any organizations or buy anything on any fundraiser, nobody has to do it. what i find funny is that people participate in fundraising and donate money to PTO or BS or GS but then complain about it. It is very simple to solve. Just do not pay anything. i think it is ridiclous to donate and then complain.

I also do not understand why your children are dragging all those lists home. it is not required, nobody has to do it, children are asked if they want to do it. only children who love doing it participate.

Also who knows where that money goes, it doesn't go towards anything academic. althletic fundraiser goes towards athlletics, if you are into school sports donate to that and don't complain. there is no need to donate to anything else.

If you support GS and BS well donate to that. do you have to? No. do you have to feel guilty? no. maybe some organizations contradict your beliefs and values, why donating to them? do they make you feel guilty? well donate to sick children, homeless, cancer patients, AIDs patients, orphans (if you can afford domations). GS and BS are not homeless or sick, if you want to buy their cookies, then do, but if you don't want to then don't buy and don't complain. If you buy those cokkies and give to hungry then it isi a different story. But that's not what people do...

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 12:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

FD, I think the problem is that some coaches and teachers use peer pressure to get the kids to do this. I agree with you.

And actually, the GS where I live do have projects to help the homeless. The HS GSs cooked a thankssgiving dinner for the homeless. OT -- what was abusrd, is they teach the middle class GS how to cook and make economical meals, but not the moms (who were only a few years older) how to market and cook economical measl.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 1:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

" it is not required, nobody has to do it, children are asked if they want to do it. only children who love doing it participate."

Not around here... It's pretty much socially-mandatory.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 3:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here, as well, kids are not asked if they wish to participate. DD & SS both have "parent folders" that come home daily with info. and anytime there's a fundraiser, the paperwork comes home. A BIG deal is usually made in the classroom---often there are contests to see which class can raise the most money, or they will give an ice cream party (etc) to the class that turns in the most forms, ETC.

I would not want either of my kids to feel excluded from something.

As far as boy scouts--FD--why do you hate them? Just curious?

DD is in Brownies this year and SS in Cub Scouts. What I truly like about both those organizations is that they will never turn a child away for lack of ability to pay. I think that is really neat.

I also have been impressed---so far this year, DD's troop has made cards for seniors in a nursing home and have a visit scheduled around Thanksgiving to go visit these elderly people and give them the cards. I like that a lot. SS's scout troop is doing the canned food drive and delivering the food to a food pantry--again, I think that is a neat experience for these privileged children.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 5:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm with Sweeby, it's practically mandated. Of course, you can't get kicked out of public school for not participating but boy oh boy, there is a lot of pressure. They tell the kids, "get out there and sell" and the kids come home on a mission.

justnotmartha's ideas of a Fun Run, kkny's car washes etc., those are better ideas to me. I believe the money does go to things for the kids, at DS7's school they upgraded the computer lab from ancient PC's to sleek Macs and new PC's. They bought new playground equipment which is very expensive and buy landscaping materials so the school campus looks pretty.

They need the money but we don't need the junk. I buy Girl Scout cookies because I was a Girl Scout but I don't buy from everyone or buy a lot. DS's school has a fancy Silent Auction event each year and you get something for your money that's been donated while the school/PTO gets all of the proceeds. The items range from professional photography sessions, trips (donated by travel agents and parents with time shares, cabins,etc.), artwork to lunch with the principal. It's fun, a nice evening out complete with cash bar and all of the money goes right to the PTO. My kind of a fundraiser! Of course they still charge $10 for a hot dog, juice box and small chips on Back To School night. Sigh.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 5:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yeah, lamom, I like those events, too!

DD's school is on a 3 yr thing. Every third yr they have a big auction---it's a HUGE fundraiser. Then on alternate years, they have different events. Last year they had a golf tournament and dinner at a country club. It was really fun. They sold foursomes for the tournament and then after the actual golf, there was a nice dinner, a band, and dancing. There was also a silent auction going alongside all that. It was very successful.

This year they are having a trivia night!

Every January, as well, the PA hosts a wine tasting for the parents. People take turns hosting it at their home and the event costs $50/couple. It's always a fun evening with drinks, appetizers and socializing.

I would much rather spend money on stuff like that---than wrapping paper or caramel corn!

    Bookmark   November 7, 2009 at 6:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

D's school has only one fundraiser -- write a check for a minimum of $50. I very much appreciate it as I hate fundraisers.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2009 at 6:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

As far as boy scouts--FD--why do you hate them? Just curious?

I do not hate them of course, they are children. I just do not support what their organziation stands for. The US BoyScout organization denies homosexuals, agnostics and atheists membership and employment. as a private organization they have rights to do so and that's why they win all the lawsuits against them, even ALCU cannot win against them. But it doesn't mean i have to be supportive of them-certainly not of organizations that discriminates based on sexual orientation, that's plain mean.

And frankly if you know many (or any) Jews, homosexuals (well obviously not), Blacks, Latino, who belong to boyscouts...BS represents population that does not need my money nor my support.

I have nothing against Girlscouts, I am not sure what they stand for, but I suspect same values.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2009 at 11:55AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Post Partum Depression Because of Step-Grandmother?
I have a 5 year old boy and a 4 month old girl. I was...
If I could tell mothers of adult stepchildren anything, Part 2
It seems my five-year-old topic has reached its limit...
How to Prevent Adult Children Living with You
If you and your spouse are of retirement age, move...
Need advice please....stepson!
I am 25 and I think I have had enough of my 9 year...
Choosing Cats over Friends
Sorry, I'm posting this here because I don't know where...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™