This is the time of year when my doorbell rings constantly with little tykes offering up their pleas for me to purchase something from their school, team or organization fundraisers.  I dread seeing these little salespeople because I don’t want to disappoint them by saying no.

I remember the days when my own kids brought home their catalogues and purchase orders that they were expected to sell.  They whined and cried about having to go door-to-door so it ended up being us – their parents – that had to do their selling for them.  Of course, I wanted them to win prizes for being the best fundraisers, but there had to be a limit.

I pity all my co-workers, neighbours, friends, relatives and – especially – their grandparents who couldn’t say no even though no-one really wanted the stuff.

I also got stuck with a lot of magazine subscriptions, candles, Christmas ornaments, coupon books, cases of cookies and chocolate bars to name a few items.

Now the tables have turned and my co-workers constantly ask if I want to purchase something their children are selling.  I don’t want to have to dodge them all day but I have to put my foot down and limit my purchases.  I now only buy things that I like, mostly consumables such as popcorn, Girl Guide cookies and chocolate-covered almonds.  I may start resembling Miss Piggy but I’ve accumulated enough junk items that clutter up my home to buy more.

A lot of sports teams and organizations such as Boy Scouts also require parents to donate their time to running bingos and other such pursuits to raise money.

Some schools and organizations now have an opt-out option where the parents pay a fee instead and they don’t have to participate in the fundraisers.

Do you think that’s a valid option, considering the initial high cost of fees and supplies?  How do you deal with these fundraisers?

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4 Comments

  1. J.B @ My University Money on September 22, 2011 at 7:27 am

    I only had one fundraiser show up at my door, and about 30 mormons, and one elections canada person. The elections person I actually didn’t mind. I think a fee to opt out of the charities is a good idea, as long as its high enough. Its hard fundraising for the events that schools try to run, too bad there’s never enough funding for these things…

  2. krantcents on September 22, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    I lived in a gated community and do not see solicitors of any kind. Before we moved here, I bought only products I wanted.

  3. Ashley @ Everything Finance on September 22, 2011 at 1:34 pm

    I just say no. I don’t sell the fundraising stuff for my kids and I don’t buy fundraising stuff from others. I do buy Girl Scout cookies though!

  4. Jean on September 24, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    I know what you mean about not wanting to say no to them. I think back to when I was a kid and it would definitely break my heart every time it happened to me. I just could not understand why they would not want to buy my product! Now, as a ‘buyer’, I try to stick to things that could be of atleast some use to someone around the house, otherwise I have to sadly say no. Funds are so tight now I have to be careful with the slightest expenses anymore unfortunately. I think the opt-out option is a very good one and more schools should start to provide it.

    -Jean

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