Living Hilo Style=Fundraising

Monday Musing from Melinda #7 by LHS Contributor Melinda M.

Don’t wash your car.

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Don’t wash your car. These girls need to!

Why wash it yourself when on any given weekend, at popular locations around town, several clubs want to wash it to earn money for air travel or equipment?

Over there at the “big” KTA? Girls volleyball trying to get to Florida for a tournament. And across the street, at the Tesoro station? The ARC of Hilo raising general funds. Just one block up, at Kai Store? A UHH club raising funds for travel. And across from them at Kinoole Baptist? A church group trying to get to El Salvador. And that’s just on the Waiakea side of town!

At this very moment, I am trying to sell car wash tickets ($7), iced cinnamon Punaluu sweet bread ($8), smoked meat ($10) and will work a car wash without pre-selling tickets.

We recently participated in two other car washes, worked concession, and sold Jamba Juice cards, homemade shortbread cookies, and steak fry plates.

The challenge is not hitting up your same social or work circle repeatedly and for someone like me, who works from home, that’s not easy! Many of us buy the club’s required number of tickets and just give them to friends. Some make our kids do the asking, but still give the tickets away for free. Others only sell the products or services we think people will actually want or use.

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Practicing their communication skills at a 4-H fundraiser.

When the kids were little, and when money was especially tight, I was reluctant to buy fundraising tickets and my husband, an elementary school teacher, had a policy not to buy at all (because if I buy from one…). But now that I’m on the other side, I can see how the act of asking develops responsibility, maturity and humility in the child and a sense of community among us all.

Because with all of our money in each other’s pockets, we really are lifting all boats. We are helping our community’s athletes and academes face new competition. We are helping them experience the camaraderie that develops when they become the visiting team. We are helping raise young adults who can interact with older adults, be thankful, and advocate for their needs.

That’s not to say I buy every fundraiser that comes my way. Lessons learned from a “no” are valuable. But I do say “yes” a lot more than I used to. Because even if my purchase of manapua from Kow’s might not make the difference in whether or not the child takes that trip, it contributes to the difference we make as a village in raising these children.IMG_0505Now…sweet bread, anyone?

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