russellhltn wrote:There's a number of things that trouble me here:
Yes, that does sound like a problem. Not sure what to suggest there. Maybe it's time to re-think the motivation factor. Or at least move the motivation to something else where the effort is recognized but isn't translated to anything financial.
- I agree. I think I do need to rethink motivations. I'm such a fan of the Law of the Harvest, it feels like a downgrade to promote a Collective Good law, vs a higher United Order law. Hard to know how best to help the individuals, while helping the group.
If I go the direction of working only for the group - all profits are distributed to those who camp, then I feel we'll be back to where we started, no one participating at all, only minimum orders from the ward. (For a data point, this year we've had 550lbs of fruit from non-youth families in the ward and 2000lbs from families - non-ward orders, a reflection of their personal selling.) As another comparison - the total expected need is $3600 for those expected to attend summer activities. So $500 isn't helping the ward participants out nearly as much as the $2500 will. And my fear is that without this motivation, we'll be putting in mediocre effort and getting back mediocre returns. That was exactly our experience in the past, with no personal financial motivation.
aebrown wrote:It sounds like a lot of your questions arise because you aren't sure whether this is a fund-raising activity, or an opportunity for youth to earn money.
This is a good point I hadn't thought about. In my mind they are pretty much the same. And maybe that's what needs to change. For me fund raising activities are all youth earning money activities. I think about past experiences - popcorn sales, candy bars, Scout-o-Rama books, Christmas wreaths, pizzas, etc. All of these activities rewarded the sellers more than those that didn't sell.
But some rewarded the group more than others. Spaghetti dinners were collective efforts to reward the collective campers. But getting participation was like pulling teeth and we rewarded those who came and helped cook, and serve more than others who didn't but still camped. Mostly it felt like leaders put in all the efforts and the kids had little to no motivation to help but got rewarded anyway. If it hadn't been for the leaders, the event would not have happened at all and been a complete flop, not only for the kids, but broken expectations from those promised something to eat for their $10 donation.
The requirements for fund-raising activities are explained in section 13.6.8
(you didn't mention how the selling of your fruit was being done, but note that that section specifically states "Nor should they sell products or services door to door").
Door to Door selling has been explicitly prohibited, per the guidelines above. But selling to non-member friends is perfectly legit and encouraged.
I reviewed this post about Fund Raising Ideas:viewtopic.php?f=46&t=18662&hilit=fund+raising+ideas
It was very helpful but some of the ideas made me ask policy questions to myself.
If the church puts on a dinner/auction, and the kids auction off services, then the church doesn't get involved in the babysitting job or the car wash because they are private transactions. But the kids use the money as they wish for video games and candy? Or should they be required to report their profits and come up with that much money when funds are due for camp? I can see that getting potentially sticky, not to mention the hurt feelings etc pointed out by some other posters.
silus99 wrote:Our ward tries not to do group fundraisers, but her are some of the ideas that have been successful for individual youth raising money on their own:
1. Cinnamon Rolls - A young woman contacted members to offer trays of uncooked homemade cinnamon rolls that would be delivered the Friday before conference weekend, and a preview Friday before that. Some people signed up for the first Friday, and then word got around and the conference Friday orders started pouring in. She made enough money for two years of girls camp. (They were really good!)
2. Weekly Dessert - Some young women sold four weeks of a weekly dessert they would deliver on Saturday. You did not know what the dessert may be, but it was always delicious. The three sisters made enough for their camp.
3. Backyard Broadway - Two young women (sisters) offered a camp for kids at their house called Backyard Broadway. It was a half-day camp on a Monday thru Friday in the summer where kids would go and practice a fun play that they would perform for their parents on the Friday night. They had simple costumes, some pretty large sets and would have about 20 kids in a camp. They soon had to expand to more than 2 weeks of the camp to accommodate the demand. They have been doing it for six years now and as the families next daughter gets old enough they take over for the one too old for camp. I believe they charge $25 per kid for the week and the youngest age is 7.
These I really like. Again - the Law of the Harvest. This wasn't a YW leader passing out signups in RS soliciting ward members. While I'm sure these didn't happen in a leader vacuum, they are
stories of kids taking initiative and earning their own personal money needed to pay for camp. That's ultimately what I'm hoping for. And how can I turn this incredible resource into such an activity?
Unfortunately, the orchard is 1 hour away driving time, so for individuals to have all the initiative it takes some resource availability, which is not always there. But that is the direction I'm thinking for next year. Make this purely a fund raising opportunity. If taken, the youth will need to do their own selling, picking and delivering and managing of the funds. We might collectively pick on the same day, but every person is on their own and reaps their own rewards.
What do you think about that? Not that I need your opinion, and I(the bishop) will still go back to the leaders and discuss this with them, but I sure like the relative anonymity that this forum provides for honest and open conversation.
aebrown wrote:In our ward, we've always encouraged everyone to participate, but we treat it as a group fund-raising activity. The proceeds are used for the costs of the annual camp, independent of the effort expended by any individual. It's kind of like the process of cleaning the church -- we never get 100% of the members to take their turn at cleaning the church, but everyone is still welcome to come to the building and participate in meetings and activities. I can understand why you want to have an incentive for youth to participate in the fund-raising activity, but it seems like you're not really providing a GROUP fund-raising activity the way you are structuring it.
I hope to get there some day. But 15+ years of experience with youth and their lack of motivation to step out of the entitlement society they are immersed in have taught me that either our youth and their families are not ready for it, or we are not teaching them sufficiently as leaders to show them the way. More often than not, even if the kid does nothing, the parent still pays for them to go. Even when they can't afford it. It is a crying shame, but that's what I'm up against.