Scottsdale parents find deals while donating funds to schools

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SCOTTSDALE -- After growing frustrated with conventional school fundraisers, Scottsdale couple Andi and Dean Barness decided they wanted a better way to support their kids' education. Today the couple officially launched Doozy of a Deal -- a 'deal of the day' website that sends a portion of the money customers pay to a school or organization of their choice.

Website co-founder Andi Barness said the idea was born in light of the recession.

"In this tough economy it was really hard to write checks to support the school when we were having our own financial problems," she said. "So we thought, 'there's got to be a way where we can benefit and the schools can benefit at the same time."

Andi Barness said that when customers register on Doozy of a Deal, they choose a school or organization that has been listed on the website. The website offers one deeply-discounted deal each day, and when customers buy the deal, 7.5 percent of the money goes to the school or organization they chose.

"This really is a win for the business, a win for schools, and a win for the people," Barness said.

Desert Trails Elementary School in Phoenix is among the schools that has already signed up to be on the list of potential recipients on Doozy of a Deal. The school's principal, Kristin Lee, said she was exited about working with the website.

"We're looking forward to working with Doozy of a Deal -- It's a great opportunity," Lee said.

Lee also said that a tightening budget meant schools had to look elsewhere for needed funds.

"The state budget is shrinking, and it's hitting the schools pretty hard," Lee said, adding that schools were "having to turn to the parents for more and more support financially."

As a result, Lee said that even though the school will only get 7.5 percent of each transaction, anything would help.

"We get just a tiny piece of that pie, but over time those things add up and come directly to the school," Lee said, later adding, "We really appreciate parents and businesses partnering with schools. Without them I don't know where we would be nowadays."

Barness echoed Lee's concern for public schools, and for the parents of the children who attended them.

"The schools are needing help right now, especially now, because of all the budget cuts," she said. "But along the same lines, the parents also need help right now because of this tough economy. Our business helps both."

For more information, send an e-mail to or call 1-800-210-1850