As a former cheerleader herself, Hubbard High School Cheer Coach Stephanie Barca understands athletes desire to keep their old cheer uniforms
, as a symbol of both personal achievement and team pride.
With that, the Hubbard, Ohio, cheerleading coach resurrected a former fundraising idea that breathes new life into old uniforms.
Rather than throwing old cheerleading uniforms
in the trash, Coach Barca decided to convert these same old uniforms into decorative pillows, which provided her graduating athletes with a memento for their years of hard work and participation and an excellent source of fundraising income.
Barca, who also works at J&J Dance Depot, enlisted the help of one student's parent, Sharon Sikora, a sewing expert who helped her bring this unique fundraising idea to life.
Since then, the two have set up shop in Sikora's basement, where they've assembled over 20 pillows to date.
"...Each pillow takes about two hours to assemble," remarks Sikora. "[Constructing the pillows] takes a lot of patience."
According to Vindy.com—
a Youngstown, Ohio, online newspaper—
each pillow prominently displays the school colors and includes a team logo. The pillows, themselves, are constructed in three sizes, based on the size of the cheerleading uniform used.
More recently, Coach Barca and Sikora have taken this fundraising idea
to the field, where boosters have had no problem getting fans and former cheerleaders to pay $25 a pop for the momentous mounds of feathers. Of the 20-some pillows Barca and Sikora have already assembled, 13 have been sold.
According to the same article, the "uniform pillows" fundraiser has been so successful, Coach Barca decided to carry on the fundraising campaign into basketball season. Proceeds from pillow sales will be spent on new supplies for the team and have already paid for nine new uniforms.