Clubs utilize creative techniques to raise funds for activities

Fundraisers provide opportunities for students to attend conferences, competitions

The+RaileRobotics+team+demonstrates+their+skills+at+the+Taste+of+Newton.+The+team+had+two+booths%2C+++one+selling+food%2C+and+the+other+showing+children+elements+of+their+program+and+summer+camp.

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The RaileRobotics team demonstrates their skills at the Taste of Newton. The team had two booths, one selling food, and the other showing children elements of their program and summer camp.

In recent years, fundraising for clubs has become increasingly competitive. While some clubs do very minimal fundraising and survive on a few donations or even money donated by their club sponsor, other clubs do significant fundraising in order to make ends meet.

One example is RailerRobotics, which raises what is equivalent to an average median income in the United States.

“The most money raised in the whole building is probably RailerRobotics because they have the most expenses,” principal Lisa Moore said. “Their fundraising probably runs into the $30-50,000 range.”

This year, however, RailerRobotics members have a goal to raise $57,000, which is even more than last year. To accomplish this, RailerRobotics does not exclusively use traditional fundraising methods.

“They have corporate sponsors who they tap into for raising money,” Moore said.

The club also writes letters and completes grant applications, in an attempt to increase funding.

“We don’t do a ton of fundraisers; we write a lot of letters and grants,” club president Abby Wenger said.

When RailerRobotics does fundraise, it often finds unique ways to do so. Members participated in the Taste of Newton and recently sold pork chops at Homecoming. They once even sold lightbulbs to raise money. RailerRobotics uses their funds for a number of purposes.

“We use it for getting into regionals, for hotel costs and for building robots. We use it for robot parts and getting into nationals,” Wenger said.
However, those clubs that require minimal funds are forced to compete amongst each other for small donations. This inspires many creative ideas, including FCCLA, which is hosting an art show Nov. 19 in the commons.

“We are the host of the art show, so how we fundraise is we set everything up, get everything organized, and then booth fees will come to us, and that’s how our fundraisers are,” FCCLA sponsor Molly Schauf said.

In addition to organizing the event, FCCLA will have a table selling fleece scarves. Other clubs will also have tables at the event.

“So far we have FCA, Market with Mrs. (Lisa) George, BPA with Mrs. (Jessica) Crabtree and German,” Schauf said.

Schauf hopes to raise over $1,000 for FCCLA through the event, both from organizing the event and from the scarves. While FCCLA does not require the level of financing RailerRobotics does, they do need operational funds.

“(We need a) general budget to go on trips, to do competitions, that kind of thing,” Schauf said.
FCCLA will also use the money to go to a state conference in Wichita in April. If the art show goes well, FCCLA plans to do the event again next year.

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