But why would an Odyssey Chapter need a Patreon? Because it can create more interactive to the audience. It lets the chapter see what the audience wants to hear about, and lets the chapter make a buck. Odyssey chapters don't really need this money, since they don't rent out space for their projects or anything, but they can use the money to advocate for what they believe in. Is the chapter strongly in favour of the arts? They can help fund arts programmes in their vicinity. Does the chapter have a community project in mind? They can use the money they make to do so. Should the chapter wish, they can even spend their earnings on their own organisation as a prize for the weekly top author, or perhaps monetarily promote shares on social media. How the chapter wishes to spend the money is entirely up to them.
Having a Patreon shouldn't be limited to just Odyssey. It can be used for just about any club. For a music-based group, it could mean commissioning songs, getting studio space, or booking gigs. For dance teams, it can help travel to competitions, getting professional mentors, and getting a team uniform designed and delivered. STEM groups could use it to fund their projects. The possibilities are only limited by imagination (and legality). This is a word of encouragement to every single student organisation: Make a Patreon! You can do massive good with it. Just keep the following in mind:
First, no member should ever withdraw any money for themselves. Yes, college is expensive, but the money belongs to the group, not any individual person. Odyssey's power should be used to do as much good as possible.
Second, set up and independent account for the club. A checking account should work fine. This is best done via the student organisation's parent organisation (e.g. school, college, university, company). Universities have plenty of resources for student organisations to develop their clubs, from simple writing utensils to the power of booking long term events.
Third, have a treasurer to manage the Patreon. have them link it to the club bank account
Fourth, maintain that the student organisation remains non-profit unless it is, by definition, not (i.e. investing club, entrepreneurship group).
Fifth, and finally, branch out. Patreon is an awesome way to monetise your club and use it to improve your organisation, sponsor something your group or university believes in, or simply get your name out. But it should not be the only one used. Venmo, Google Ads, Kickstarter, GoFundMe, selling ad space on a blog. There are so many options and everything should be taken advantage of. No opportunity should be missed.
Sure, clubs and activities are fun, but as people trying to market themselves and their talents and skills, everyone must learn to be enterprising. One huge gift of the internet is a free education in marketing and enterprise. To grow as individuals and as a club, the entire group has to think like entrepreneurs. This is a free and global capitalist society. Money talks loudly, and it's going to make all words and actions speak louder.