Team Fundraising—Should it be Allowed?

Cambridge athletic teams should be allowed to receive outside funding. The varsity boys soccer team came to an agreement to start a GoFundMe to raise money for extra team gear. The team started with the goal of raising two thousand dollars for team tracksuits, allowing players to receive merchandise, regardless of their socioeconomic status. Over the next couple of days, the team advertised the fundraiser on social media to friends, family, and even school teachers. They raised $1,500 within a week.

Team merchandise and fundraising also helps boost team engagement.”

Team merchandise and fundraising also helps boost team engagement and our sense of community. Henry Bonney ’24 tells the Register Forum, “I really feel like it would help the morale and cohesiveness of the team if we would be able to rep the same gear at school and during practice.” As Bonney suggests, merchandise would further build team chemistry. A couple of days into the season, Athletic Director Tom Arria told the team they would no longer be allowed to operate their GoFundMe. The team was caught by surprise. Bonney recalls, “It was gut-wrenching to hear the news that all our work was postponed due to school policies.” In prior years, teams have been able to start GoFundMes and raise money. The team thought they would be allowed to do the same. Unfortunately, Mr. Arria began to enforce anti-fundraising rules this season, shutting down the team’s fundraiser.

Not only has the boys soccer team been impacted by these decisions from Mr. Arria, but the girls soccer program was also forced to discontinue their funding for their teams. In an interview with the Register Forum, Arie De Swaan Aarons ’24 explained, “Mr. Arria demanded us to stop fundraising, which was very sad to hear because we had been planning to buy program-wide gear and go on team bonding trips.” She continues, “he never explained to us why we had to stop, and also suspended our head coach for multiple games—including a Kicks for Cancer game, which is a huge fundraiser for cancer research where we represented all of CRLS.” Mr. Arria’s punishments have not only hurt players and coaches, but other organizations as well.  

As members of the CRLS soccer team, we are not asking for more money from the school, but the ability to fundraise for our team. However, if players are not allowed to fund their teams with outside money, the school should financially support our athletic teams more. With a district-wide budget of 1.8 million dollars allotted for athletics, two thousand dollars for the boys varsity soccer team would be a relatively small amount. 

After the season ended, the team was able to collect the money and buy gear. However, the process took a long time and we hoped that we would have been able to get gear during the season. We hope to be able to streamline this process easier in the future, and fund next year’s season. All we want is to feel a sense of community. Go Falcons!

This article also appears in our November 2022 print edition.