Friday, October 06, 2006

Covering Soccer Fees & Other Afterschool Costs

A non-profit group recently ran a contest for ideas about paying for after-school activity costs. The winning tips, from a mom in Arizona, are interesting. Here is the news release:

"Parents Offer Budgeting Tips for Covering Kids' Extracurricular Activities

Consumers with tight budgets have developed creative strategies for stretching their funds to pay for their children's extracurricular activities. For The Freedom Point's August Share the Wealth contest, consumers were asked, "How do you make room in your budget for your kids' extracurricular activities?"

The winning response came from Nancy T. in Tucson, Ariz. Nancy wrote, "We have a "Squeeze the Turnip" fund in our house. Everyone tries to think of at least one innovative way to make money from nothing each week. Any money made from these ideas is put in a fund for extracurricular activities. Some examples are: a change jar in which we empty our change each day, using coupons at the grocery store, volunteering to help church members clean out their garages and basements and taking the unwanted items for our pay and then having a yard sale, house and pet sitting, and taking clothes to consignment shops.

"Our last trick is to buy popular items on closeout at Lowes or Home Depot and resell them on e-bay. These money making schemes include all members of our family, and the children know they can only do whatever we have been able to fund from them. It works very well!"

The Freedom Point's Share the Wealth contest poses a new question each month to its customers and its online community members. The goal is to share practical examples of ways people are managing their money while paying off their debts, making ends meet and having fun in their lives - real things that real people are doing that others could benefit from.

"By working together to make money for those fun, extracurricular activities, my kids have gotten a sense of the value of money," said Nancy. "They've developed a strong work ethic and are very cost conscious. They always make sure the items they purchase are on sale. They've learned that they can't always do what 'everyone else' is doing or have what 'everyone else' has, which is an important life lesson for everyone."

Winning entries are selected based on combining a no-nonsense approach to managing money while still pursuing fun and practical activities that don't sabotage their efforts to pay off debt and save money. These entries as well as other great money-saving tips are featured on The Circle, The Freedom Point's online community located at Winners receive a $250 gift card to spend at various popular retailers.

To participate in The Freedom Point's monthly Share the Wealth contest or to sign up to receive Share the Wealth contest alerts, please visit The Circle at and register for free as a community member.

About The Freedom Point
The Freedom Point is a financial fitness company providing a breadth of financial services, including advice, coaching, peer connections, education and access to resources that help individuals gain control of their personal finances. To reach a Freedom Point Financial Fitness Coach, consumers can call 1-800-4-FREEDOM. Headquartered in Columbia, Md., The Freedom Point is a member of the Ascend One Corporation and its family of businesses. For more information, visit"

1 comment:

Single Ma said...

Very interesting...

I might have to use a few of these tips. We want our children to be involved, learn the importance of teamwork, enjoy their childhood, make friends, and get the best out of their school years - but those extracurricular activities can get expensive.

Good article!