Should Kids Contribute Toward Their Sports or Activity Fees?

Do you write check after check to pay for your kids activities? Find out why your kids help contribute toward their activity fees.

Do you write check after check to pay for your kids activities? Find out why we think it's important for your kids to help contribute toward their activity fees.

Our boys are in the midst of winter workouts for their travel baseball team. This also means, our teams are prepping for the upcoming season: ordering uniforms, scheduling games and tournaments and raising funds to pay for it all.

In order for all of the planning to come together, every parent gets assigned a committee. This year, I am in charge of fundraising! Of course, I referenced Sports Mom’s 10 Creative Fundraising Ideas for Sports Teams & Schools. The best option for our team was to sell the $1 candy bars.  How simple can it get? Give the kids a box of candy bars to sell and they make 50% profit. Because the product is an extremely low ticket item, they will sell quickly.

Fast forward to a few days before candy bar distribution day.  I send out an email to the parents to remind them of the fundraiser and expectations….all of the sudden everything went down hill!! All it took was ONE parent to hit “reply all” and announce that they didn’t want to sell candy bars, they would just cover the cost of the fundraiser by writing a check.

And then another replied that they would do the same thing.  And another. And another.  Before I knew it only 4 kids out of 12 were going to participate.

I quickly learned there should have been an expectation set that the fundraiser was NOT optional, but at this point it was too late.

It’s beneficial for kids to contribute toward their activity fees:

What I do know is that we are blessed to live in an affluent area where finances are not a problem for many.

What I find troubling is that parents just write a check to cover their child’s needs.

What gets missed is the fact that these athletes take no ownership in their sports fees.

If your kids are playing a travel sport, or are involved in any intense activity, fees can be crazy high…so as parents do we just write a check for $1500 (or more) and call it a day? In the meantime, our kids don’t appreciate the equipment they are using, the umps/refs that have to be paid, the hotel, food expenses and more.

By setting a precedent that your child participate in team fundraising, or contributing in some way to their season fees, helps your athlete to:

  • appreciate the value/cost of participating on a team
  • realize the responsibility of paying for their own expenses

It’s a life lesson and small stepping stone to learning about financial responsibility.

What’s your take on your kid’s helping out with their sports or activity fees?