For a long time, Outdoor Service Guides has talked about our “unofficial policy” about fund raising. However, the current board has chosen to make an official policy. We believe that this change is the best choice for our organization.
As a reminder, we do not have any fund raisers for our national organization. We only ask for registrations. As an all volunteer organization, we have found a way to fund our training, badges, background checks and more without asking our members to sell anything. All fund raisers are conducted at the local level by individual groups, or local groups who choose to work together on a project. As such, every GSM should become familiar with this policy.
OSG Fundraising Policy:
- No national sales. This means you are not permitted to sell items like magazines, wrapping paper, etc with large national or international companies.
- We encourage you to have your guides do the work to make what they sell, whether that is food or crafts.
- If you partner with a local business, make sure that your group is not exploited and that you are partnering with a place that shares our values as an organization. Businesses that discriminate against any group of people should not be considered as a fundraising partner.
- On-line sales of items your group designed or created are allowed.
- On-line or in person auctions or yard sales of things donated to your group are allowed.
- Do not send youth members door to door with items to sell, as this is unsafe.
- All in-person sales should be under the direct supervision of two scout leaders, per our two deep leadership policy.
- Online fundraisers for a specific purpose, performed independently or with companies which do not conflict with our values as an organization, are permitted.
- Private sponsorships, for example (but not limited to) equipment or a campsite, where the group or its members would benefit from the sponsorship while allowing the sponsor themselves to benefit while not in use by the group, are permitted. If there is any question about the suitability of such a relationship, those fall to the regional commissioner.
- Legally purchased or donated third-party property of a group, region, or national organization, ie: gently used tents, sleeping bags, canoes, etc, may be rented or sold to outside parties to the benefit of the organization, without exclusion.
If you are unsure if your fundraising idea is okay, please check with your Regional Commissioner for guidance.
As some of this might be confusing, here is a list of some ways your group can fund raise:
- Host a meal, such as a spaghetti supper or pancake breakfast and charge for tickets or ask for donations.
- Accept donations through a website.
- Have guides make items such as soap, walking sticks, or cookies and sell those at a local event.
- Sell items with your group logo on them, that you create or that are made by a website.
- Rent out your group equipment.
- Accept donations from local businesses.
- Have a talent show, also accepting donations or selling tickets in advance.
- Have a car wash, or dog wash.
Providing high level scouting experiences can be expensive. We hope that having a clear policy will help your group navigate fund raising so that you can have the best adventures possible.