Covid contact rules complicate school activity fundraising

Oct 12, 2020

Credit Homer High School

Fundraising for sports and other school activities is a ritual all student athletes -- and their parents -- undertake each school year. Until 2020.
    “Well, we have 14 organized athletic teams plus the Drama Debate and Forensics team. So 15  in all. And pretty much anything you can imagine that they would traditionally we do, whether it's a selling food, having a carwash, and in recent years, the most popular means to raise revenue is raffles,” said Homer High School counselor Paul Story. “Students being in the community, student athletes, typically being in the community, you know, at Safeway, asking friends and neighbors to support a cash raffle is the most typical one. And the school district has said that's just not safe and proper in this environment.”
    Story says the Homer High Mariner Booster Club will attempt to replace the lost revenue with a new online raffle. It’s a daunting task, which Story says needs extraordinary community support.
    “We are hoping to generate $10,000. So the winner would get $5,000. That's our goal right now. We just started it. We have $952 in the kitty,” Story said. “So we're hoping for some more community support because, you know, typically I think most, every team has a raffle and I think those would typically generate between two and $3,000 per team, even after the payout of the prizes. So to substitute for that, it's a pretty large order. And so we're hoping people can rally.”
    Story says there are links to the raffle on the Homer High School and the booster club’s Facebook pages.
    He said activities are important to help normalize school for students.
    “It's a really heavy lift for the teachers in particular, who are juggling the remote students and the in-person students. But the students are following the guidelines because they really want to be in school and stay in school. And as far as the activities are concerned, it's an important part of their physical and emotional health. it gives them something to do, and it feels a little bit normal if we can keep these activities going. And even if they have to be modified. It's better than nothing for sure. And we need support to continue to make that happen. So thanks to everybody for contributing.”
    One fundraising avenue the booster club has used for many years will now be unavailable. In his video conference about the high school football team’s Covid-19 outbreak on Wednesday, Homer Principal Doug Waclawski said he will not allow the concession stand to operate, and will ban all food and drink during school activities, as a way to keep coronavirus transmission down.