Volunteerism. Definition – the policy or practice of volunteering one’s time or talents for charitable, educational, or other worthwhile activities, especially in one’s community.
This is my 35th year at Sacred Heart School. I see it over and over each year, but it amazes me how generous some people are to our school. There was a big snowstorm January 25 and 26. The church and the school needed the walks, the entrances, the playground, all areas between the buildings, and the parking lots cleared so we can have school and church. Thankfully we have Adam Santo taking care of snow removal and grounds keeping for us. Adam and a crew of volunteers, many with their own equipment, took care Sacred Heart this week. The Frederick Family, James Keller, Ted Bebermeyer, Zach Kafer, Luke Goff and Adam volunteered several hours to get the job done. I don’t have any idea what it would cost to pay someone to do this snow removal but thanks to these generous people we don’t have that expense.
A few years ago I did calculations on the volunteerism that goes in to our athletic program when it comes to home games and travel. For home games, it takes quite a crew to get all the jobs done. It takes gate people, scoreboard operators, scorebook keepers, JV and Junior High referees, line judges, announcers, and concession workers to host an athletic contest. Many schools pay these people. At Sacred Heart, they are all volunteers. Our teams travel to away athletic contests. We travel by bus to away games (this year due to COVID we are taking two buses so our students can better socially distance). We have seven very generous men and women that drive our teams to away games, sometimes long distances like to Cozad for a district final. All of this is done by volunteers.
I am very thankful for the men and women that referee our JV and Junior High games. I am very thankful for the women that line judge all our home volleyball games. Being a game official is a thankless job. Sometimes fans yell and scream at the officials or line judges (even our own fans). These people are special because at Sacred Heart, they are all volunteers.
Back to the calculations… I estimate that the volunteers that help us at our home games and drive our buses, save our school about $20,000 each year. $20,000 is a number that sticks with me when thinking of how we fund our school. We have around 200 kids in our school. For every $20,000 we spend or save; that’s $100 per student. So the home game and bus driver volunteers are saving $100 per student each year. If we paid these people we would have to add $100 to each student’s tuition or have a $20,000 fundraiser to raise this money.
Our Booster Club Memberships are similar. Our Family Booster Memberships and our Business Memberships brought in around $25,000 this year. That’s $125 per student fundraiser. Without it we would have to add $125 to tuition or raise it somehow. That’s why at the beginning of the school year, all our Sacred Heart families and all our benefactors get notifications urging them to join. This money is vital to our operation. We are still accepting members.
I appreciate all our volunteers. There are many of you who are selfless and step up time and time again. I encourage our school families though that have not answered the call when asked to volunteer. We have several who do not. As we try to keep our costs down, every volunteer helps us accomplish that. Please be generous. Thank you to all our families for making the sacrifices to send your children to Sacred Heart School.