A major source of funding for projects, programming and sports at Columbia High School is suffering and needs your help.
This year, CHS went “paperless” — meaning no flyers and envelopes coming home in backpacks. While it’s a great move for the environment, the Columbia High School Cougar Boosters program is scrambling to adapt to the change. The Boosters had collected only $125-150 in funds from its annual “red letter” drive as of Oct. 17 compared to about $3,000 at the same time last year.
(To support CHS Cougar Boosters, donate here.)
Boosters Board Secretary Lisa Nolet explained, “For years, on the first day of school a white envelope went home to parents full of paperwork for parents to fill out: emergency forms, free lunch forms and the CHS Cougar Boosters red letter request for donations…. Parents sat down to go through their paperwork, wrote checks and sent it in with the rest of the paperwork.”
Added Boosters President Hank Zona, “Going paperless is admirable but not everyone has the same access to technology to benefit from paperless, and even those that do, starting with me, don’t open every school email, or do more than scan them or open every link. We project we will be down at least $3,000 which means two or three different groups we won’t be able to grant funds to this year.”
Right now, Boosters are relying on funds from their other fundraiser — the spring Annual Golf Classic at Maplewood Country Club — to fund requests, but it’s just not enough, said Zona and Nolet.
What do the Boosters do and why should you support them?
Nolet explained, “In just the last year or so, we’ve supported the football team by helping them to purchase a camera to tape practices, Midnight Madness, the baseball program’s efforts to refurbish their batting cage, Robotics, the Grad Returns — a program that brings back recent grads to talk with students about life in college, boys ultimate frisbee, Marching Band, a replacement mat for the wrestling team, SAT prep books for after school opportunities in the library for students to prepare for the SATSs the All School Musical, and the boys tennis program. I’m sure I’ve forgotten a few.”
Overall, said Nolet, the Boosters can count 70 different teams and clubs and programs that the group has helped fund in the last few years. “Some groups need to come back every year for funds due to the expense of their activity,” said Nolet. “Others may come once every several years.”
Nolet is also the co-president of the CHS Home School Association and said that that organization is also suffering from the paperless change. She and Zona said that locals should also support the CHS Scholarship Fund and CHS Music Parents’ Association, which are similarly adjusting to the paperless environment.
If you want to contribute to the CHS Cougar Boosters, donate here.
Columbia High School Home School Association: www.columbiahsa.org
CHS Scholarship Fund: chssf.org
CHS Music Parents’ Association: www.chsmpa.org