The Good and Bad of Athletic Booster Clubs

As you are undoubtedly aware, athletic booster clubs play a critical role in the fundraising process. Without ABCs, many athletes would not be able to access the equipment they need to play the sports they love. But centralized ABCs are not without their shortcomings.

The following are the advantages and drawbacks of centralized athletic booster clubs.

Pros of ABCs

From a logistics standpoint, having a centralized athletic booster club is a huge advantage. When a school is working with a single entity, only one organization has to file taxes, manage funds, rally participants, etc. 

Additionally, an athletic booster club can redistribute funds when a smaller sport needs money. This is a common occurrence, especially among larger schools that have one or two sports teams that are wildly popular. 

For instance, let’s say that your school’s football and basketball teams always have an easy time generating revenue, but lacrosse hasn’t quite gained traction in the community. In this scenario, your booster club could provide the lacrosse team with leftover funding that was generated as part of basketball or football fundraising efforts. 

Another advantage to a centralized ABC is that this type of club can encourage community members to support sports that they may not otherwise. 

If relatives of a student athlete on the football team had positive interactions with the club, they might be willing to contribute to non-football-related events in the future. An all-in-one club can help smaller teams raise funds more effectively. 

Cons of ABCs

High school sports are notorious for schedule overlap. This overlap not only creates headaches for parents but can also produce scheduling conflicts for booster club members when arranging fundraising events. 

A centralized ABC, especially one with a relatively small membership, may not have the flexibility to accommodate the needs of all of the teams. 

The lack of flexibility among centralized athletic booster clubs is one of the major factors fueling the trend toward activity-specific clubs. If a team has its own dedicated group of boosters, it can more effectively raise funds for its club. This is particularly appealing to less prominent groups, such as fine arts clubs and smaller sports teams. 

Are Activity-Specific Clubs the Better Answer?

Some believe that activity-specific clubs offer a better solution than centralized ABCs. Whether that holds true for your school is a question that you and the other boosters will have to answer. 

When exploring both models, be mindful of the benefits provided by a centralized booster club. If you elect to transition to team-specific booster clubs, you will no longer be able to tap into that collaborative pool of resources. 

With that in mind, you may want to consider adopting a centralized platform that facilitates better communication between club members, coaches, parents, and supporters. 

Dedicated booster club software empowers you to create custom calendars, collaborate, track resources, and more. Such a platform will allow you to reap the benefits of a centralized ABC while also increasing your ability to serve all teams and groups at your school.