Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Aussie Olympiad Fund Appeal

For the last few years, especially in the months leading up to an Olympiad, the Australian Chess Federation has always run a very successful Olympiad Fund Appeal. Given the overall cost of travel for our men's and women's teams, the amounts collected are quite modest. But they help.

For example, about this same time two years ago, the ACF collected over $10,000 in donations. This year, however, they've garnered only a paltry $700! And we are only a little over a month out from the Olympiad in Norway.

What has happened? An economic dip Down Under that we don't know about?

Perhaps it is because of the much criticised Australian federal budget that Aussie chess fans have really tightened their wallets. Or perhaps it is because there is hardly any mention of the ACF's Olympiad Appeal that folks are just not aware of it.

I checked this year's ACF newsletters, where the Appeal is normally prominently mentioned, but there is nothing. Nada! On the other hand, newsletters from 2 years ago mention the Appeal right at the very top of every issue in the months leading up to the Olympiad event.

So all this makes me wonder: did the ACF just forget to promote the Olympiad Appeal? Or are they, in fact, angling for the Tromso Travel Fund? Frankly, I doubt the latter.

At any rate, there is still some time to donate. I know I'll be sending a few bucks to the ACF. Hopefully, that will get me one of those blow-by-blow accounts from the players. I think it's $50 or more and you get an exclusive newsletter direct from Tromso.

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