Making It Happen – Supporting Your Child’s Sporting Future
Everyone loves a soccer mom. Of course, moms can support their kids no matter which sports they might be interested. Your kids might love baseball or gymnastics. Sadly, many of the school teams struggle with a lack of funding and support. This means moms have to work harder to help their children make the most of school and community sports provisions. Now the term ‘soccer mom’ means fundraiser, kit washer, and team driver.
With so few children having the means to seek private coaching, their sporting future relies on the coaches and resources funded by the community. It relies on volunteers like all those other soccer moms to rally together and find the cash needed to keep the team going. So what can you do in your community to make sure every child has access to sports and the chance to excel?
Every team needs cash. It can pay for equipment and safety gear. It can pay for kit and laundry services. It can even pay for the maintenance of sports fields. You might want to raise funds to pay for a specialist coach, or just to cover the cost of a few trophies and medals. Most people will be willing to help a children’s sports team. All you need to do is pique their interest.
Start with some event ideas. You might have some competitions or some raffles. Make sure you’re up to date with local regulations for these things. Some areas are stricter than others. You might hold a bingo night or even a karaoke night. Again, check in with your local authority to see if you need a special license. Something as simple as a bake sale can help generate much-needed funds.
Next, you need a venue. Your school or local community center might be able to help here. Maybe even the local sports center can offer you a field. You might need a gazebo, and if there is space, you could even hire a jumping castle to keep the kids entertained. Beyond the baked goods, you might sell a range of items like books or games. These might be used or new.
Gift baskets are ideal prizes and goods for sale that can help raise money. Because they can be bought for others, you might have more success with an attractive fruit basket or gift baskets for a wine lover. You might choose to make up some interesting gift baskets yourself. This means the items you are selling are unique or even tailored to the type of people you expect will attend.
Sponsored Sporting Event
What better way to raise much-needed funds than to organize a sponsored sporting event? After all, the money will go toward supporting sports in your community, so it makes sense to stick with this theme. You might set up a sponsored goal-a-thon to see how many goals can be scored in a twelve hour period. There are plenty of variations you might come up with on this idea too.
Endurance tests like fun runs or half marathons are also good ways to raise money. Prepare a sponsorship form and ask participants to raise a minimum amount for entry to the event. You are likely to need the support of your local authority and highways office, as well as local law enforcement. You need to make sure you can protect participants running by the road.
There are fun sponsored events too. How many custard pies to the face can your coach take in sixty seconds? How many balloons can the javelin team burst on the athletics field? Or how about breaking a world record? All of these ideas will help encourage people in your community to sponsor the participants.
Taking A Formal Role
Of course, you can take a formal or active role in your child’s sports team to help the club or school save money. You could take an advanced driving course to become the new team bus driver. Or maybe you fancy the idea of qualifying as a professional coach? The children need to stay hydrated, kits need to be cleaned and sewn, and the games need to be umpired.
Perhaps you like the idea of a less active role? Teams with FaceBook pages, newsletters, and even their own website can find it easier to drum up public support. Don’t be afraid to produce press releases to the wider journalist community. This kind of story can often balance a local newspaper well. Talking about what you’re all doing can become a popular lifestyle or special interest article as well.
Of course, when children are involved, it’s best to have the right medical team and safeguarding officer. This might become your job if you seek to undertake the appropriate qualifications and checks. Looking after the kids is a really important role to take on. The other parents will appreciate your care and attention.
Sometimes local businesses are willing to offer some cash in exchange for advertising opportunities. They might seek to add their logo to the team kit. Or maybe they want a strong PR piece about how they donated lots of equipment. In tough economic times, it can be tricky to convince companies to part with cash. Make sure you’re able to offer plenty for their input.
Approaching businesses is best done in person. You can take a presentation kit with you and talk about how much money you’re hoping to raise. If you seek one business from each sector, then there will be no conflicts to worry about. Also, small businesses are more willing to put in small sums if they know everyone else is doing it. All those little bits will soon add up to a good fund pot.
Be sure to always thank your corporate sponsors on all your posts and releases. This will encourage them to work with you again in the future. Of course, many businesses prefer to back the winning team. If your team is just starting out or running some bad luck, you might find it more tricky to encourage corporate support. How will you support your child’s sporting interests?