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Editorial: Camp Wildcat was good choice for ASA grant

By Wildcat Opinions Board
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
March 31, 2000
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Last semester, ASUA decided not to help fund Camp Wildcat, a 150-member organization designed to serve underprivileged Tucson children.

The nonprofit association has provided camp activities free for children since 1965, and state law prohibits university funding for philanthropic events. But according to ASUA Sen. Shane Brogan, the event for which Camp Wildcat requested money did not fall under this distinction.

But after recently receiving a grant from the Arizona Students' Association, Camp Wildcat seems to be on its way toward economic recovery.

In its first year awarding a grant to one club at each of the state's universities, ASA doled out $1000 - about $200 more than the group requested in September - to help Camp Wildcat.

The ASA grant will help Camp Wildcat send 60 UA students and 80 fourth graders to Mount Lemmon next month. And being one of the few worthwhile organizations on campus, it is important that Camp Wildcat was the first to receive the grant.

The amount the group requested last year would have eliminated almost 50 percent of the transportation costs that counselors would otherwise have to pay out of their own pockets.

It's a rare student who has a spare moment between classes, studying, work and a social life - let alone hours at a time to put aside for planning kids' camp activities, or days to spend with children other than their own.

And according to ASUA, the students who gave up their precious time to volunteer for Camp Wildcat should also have to help pay for it.

While most of the activities carried out by Camp Wildcat are clearly philanthropic - helping small children for free - the restrictions shouldn't keep ASUA from funding the organization's other activities. In doing so, ASUA has shown that it will help, and it should continue to help as much as the law allows.

ASUA has recognized the importance of Camp Wildcat on several occasions. It is a three-time recipient of the Edgar Goyette award, presented by ASUA, for outstanding philanthropy and has been UA club of the year three times in the last five years.

ASUA can't account for everyone, and their priorities sometimes seem lost on insignificant groups with relatively trite goals. But at least there are organizations like ASA who are willing to pitch in to some of the most important student groups.

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