Mayflower Council Eagle Scout Service Project Fundraising Guidelines
There are many worthy Eagle Scout Service Projects that can be carried out at minimal cost, if any. Fundraising is allowed to the extent required to cover the expected expense but projects whose sole purpose is to raise funds do not qualify as Eagle Leadership Service Projects. All fundraising or requests for material donations should be done in a restrained manner, similar to simple unit fundraising efforts. The expense of the project is not considered in the determination of the appropriateness of Eagle Scout Service Projects.
While youth members are normally not permitted to solicit funds on behalf of other organizations while representing the BSA, the Mayflower Council grants an exception for youth members raising funds for an Eagle Scout Service Project, with another organization being the project beneficiary; all funds raised above the amount needed for the project must be given to the beneficiary or returned to donors, not kept by the Eagle candidate or the unit.
Before soliciting donations of materials and monetary funds or conducting any fundraising efforts, Eagle Scout candidates must submit the “Eagle Scout Project Fundraising Application” located in the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook to the Scout Service Center two weeks in advance of your fundraising efforts.
The requirements for planning, developing, and giving leadership must be met through the project itself, not through the fundraising effort. For this reason, approaches such as online fundraising are acceptable and may be handled exclusively by a parent or unit leader. A list of District Eagle Advisors available to provide coaching can been made available to Scoutmasters and Unit Commissioners, please contact your District Advancement Chairman – emails can be found at https://www.mayflowerbsa.org/program/youth/advancement/
Crowdfunding for Eagle Scout Service Projects
- The Guide to Advancement allows for the use of “crowdfunding” via the internet for Eagle Scout Service Projects but not for general troop fundraising. The Mayflower Council neither recommends nor prohibits the use of crowdfunding or any specific crowdfunding source. Wikipedia provides a comparison of crowdfunding services. If this route is taken, the website’s fine print should be carefully reviewed by someone in a position of responsibility. The unit leaders and parents will need to consider these questions:
- Are the website’s terms of service in conflict with any BSA policies?
- What kind of financial cost will the provider charge for this service?
- Will you be able to keep donations even if you don’t reach your stated monetary goal (required)?
- Does the site have an auto-shut off upon reaching the funding goal?
- How long does it take to get your funds after the donating window closes?
- Are you required to offer some sort of reward to backers? If so, what will the rewards be?
- What are the site’s requirements if you raise more than you need? For example, certain providers require excess funds be used solely for the project, not just turned over to the project beneficiary.
- When using a Crowdfunding site to fund an Eagle Project, the project MUST be set up under the Tax ID# of the beneficiary with all funds going to the beneficiary. The beneficiary of the service project is responsible to ensure all IRS guidelines related to contributions/donations are being met such as refunding donor money and contribution statements if applicable. The Eagle candidate may register and promote the site, but an adult must set it up under the beneficiary’s Tax ID#.
- If using a crowdfunding website, be sure that the details pertaining to the project are clearly presented. In addition, the project beneficiary must be clearly identified and it should not appear or represent that the BSA or any of its scout units are beneficiaries of the funds.
- It is worth repeating that any funds raised via crowdfunding belong to the beneficiary organization, not the Eagle candidate or the troop.
For more information, see 188.8.131.52 Fundraising Issues at http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/GuideToAdvancement/EagleScoutRank.aspx