At the CSA meeting on Monday, April 5, both Engineers Without Borders and Rotblatt applied to use Café Fast as a fundraiser. Engineers Without Borders was approved while Rotblatt was not.
Café Fast is a fundraising program offered by Bon Appetit in which students can donate their Friday lunch meal. In exchange, Bon Appetit gives the organization three dollars for every meal donated. Café Fast can be utilized three times per term and student groups can apply for the program through CSA.
Carleton’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders applied for Café Fast to raise money to send students to Peru this summer. They will install new greenhouses and maintain ones already in place. Engineers Without Borders used Café Fast last year and the request was approved again unanimously.
Senator Ted Longabaugh ’11 presented Rotblatt’s case for Café Fast. Rotblatt is Carleton’s annual softball game that plays as many innings as the number of years since the school was founded. T-shirts are given out to early risers and food is often provided. Rotblatt would use the money raised from Café Fast to buy food for the event. Rotblatt is also funded by CSA, local businesses, and personal donations from students.
Senator Chase Kimball ’10 felt that Rotblatt did not fulfill the charitable goals of Café Fast. He noted that Café Fast guidelines dictated that the program was for “qualified charitable organizations.”
“The purpose of Café Fast isn’t just to fund any event on campus.” Kimball said “[It’s] to go to something service-oriented.”
Longabaugh pointed out that Rotblatt was approved for Café Fast last year and Senator Gabe Davis ’11 mentioned that the guidelines concerning the use of Café Fast for “charitable food-related organizations” have not always been followed in the past.
“There is a precedent for funding and if the guidelines are going to be adhered to from now on out, CSA should be more consistent about their enforcement,” said Davis.
Senator Peter Ladner ’10 also commented that, “no student will confuse Rotblatt with a charitable organization…so if we approve it, then it’ll be up to students to decide whether or not they support Rotblatt.”
“Regardless of Rotblatt’s obvious popularity on campus, it is not a charity. Therefore, it should not receive funding,” Kimball said.
Other issues that Senators had with the Café Fast request is that there is a limit of three per term. If Rotblatt were approved, other organizations would not be able to use Café Fast for fundraising. A Café Fast was already utilized to fundraise for the Minnesota Food Share.
There were eight votes in favor of the Rotblatt Café Fast including Vice President Isaac Hodes ’11, Treasurer Sarah Duane ’11, and Senators Gabe Davis ’11, Justin Moor ’12, Ned Heckman ’13, Sana Rafiq ’13, Charlie Liu ’11, and Peter Ladner ’10.
Senators Chase Kimball ’10, Hannah Heavenrich ’12, Mouhamadou Diagne ’12, Noe Hernandez ’11, David Heifitz ’11, Rebecca Gourevitch ’12, Arnav Durani ’11, and Marc Boyce ’11 voted against the request. Senator Ted Longabaugh abstained from voting.
Because there was not a majority of votes for Rotblatt, the appeal was not approved.
With its request for Café Fast denied, Rotblatt will have to continue their fundraising efforts to make the event happen on May 15.