The Daily Tar Heel

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Tuesday March 28th

Carolina Mock Trial pursues new fundraising approach

After a missed deadline, Carolina Mock Trial has created a GoFundMe page in order to supplement some of their funds.

Senior Catherine O’Neill, a member of the executive board of Carolina Mock Trial, said the organization missed the deadline for presenting their budget to UNC, so they will have to think of new ways to raise funds.

“It's just one of those things; it happens because of miscommunication, you’re just kind of a blip on the radar in the grand scheme of things,” she said.

Senior Arvind Krishnamurthy, captain for one of the teams, said he doesn’t think the lack of funds is exceptionally different than past years.

“We got some money from the University but not as much as we need, and since I’ve been there, we’ve never had enough money,” he said. 

Krishnamurthy said Carolina Mock Trial does some of their own fundraising every year, but this year they will have to work harder to make up for the money they didn’t receive from the University. 

In the past, the organization has put together benefit nights at local restaurants and gotten money from alumni. The American Mock Trial Association also provides the organization with some money for hosting tournaments.

“Thankfully we’ve already received a great amount of support from just family and friends through the GoFundMe,” O’Neill said. “We’re pursuing some other options, whether that be sponsorship from local law firms and things like that, or local businesses.”

Junior Christopher Stock, president of Mock Trial at North Carolina State University, said their organization receives most of its funding from the university, but has done some fundraising in the past and collects dues from its members.

“Our adviser is Dr. (Traciel) Reid. She's the head of the political science department so she helps us get a lot of funds raised for the whole process of registering with (American Mock Trial Association) and the regional tournament,” Stock said. “It gets a little pricey sometimes.”

The money Carolina Mock Trial raises goes toward fees for tournaments and reimbursing members for gas money and hotel rooms when they travel. Some of the money also goes toward hosting a tournament.

“We do obviously like to cover those costs for members because we don't want to leave any members in a position where they’re not able to compete just because cost is a limitation,” O’Neill said.

O'Neill said the teams are very competitive and travel long distances for tournaments in places such as Washington, D.C., and New York.

"Every amount that we get will be a net benefit, so in that sense, yeah, I don’t know if we’ll reach what our stated goal is on there, but every little bit helps,” Krishnamurthy said.

O'Neill said members of Carolina Mock Trial put in multiple hours a week of practice for the organization, so it may be challenging to spend extra time on fundraising.

“We have amazing members," O'Neill said. "We're super committed to the organization, and while it’s a challenge, I don’t think it’s a challenge we won't be able to overcome.” 

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