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2013 Annual Report, Development Committee
We on the Development Committee are excited about the future of NEYM and are dedicated to ensuring its fiscal stability. Although volunteers do much of the work of the Yearly Meeting, money is needed to support our staff, our administration, and our programs. Our committee’s goal this year has been to engage more Friends in the financial stewardship of NEYM. Several of our major donors have donated $25,000, and they challenge the rest of us to join together to match their generosity by increasing current donations or donating for the first time. They are especially encouraging Friends to develop a habit of giving on a regular basis or to sign up for GiveMonthly.
Approximately 320 Friends make donations above what they give through their meeting’s donation to the Yearly Meeting. In the past few years, about 15 of these Friends gave at least $1,000 a year, totaling more than half of the amount we receive from individuals. We recognize that most Friends cannot contribute at this level, but we also know that we should not rely so heavily on the generosity of just a few Friends. Financial support —no matter how small—from each of our members is vital to the health of the Yearly Meeting. If everyone gave as they are able, we could close the budget gap and have funds to expand our witness and service.
This past year, the Development Committee sent out two mailings. The fall solicitation to all Friends in the New England Friend included a farewell letter from retiring YM secretary, Jonathan Vogel-Borne. In the spring, we sent a letter only to active households—those with members who attend Sessions, have children in the retreat programs, serve on committees, or participate in Yearly Meeting programs. Kevin Lee wrote a moving testimony about his years of working with the children in retreats and the value of youth programs to the Yearly Meeting.
In February, we held a weekend-long committee retreat at Quaker House at West Falmouth Meeting (Sandwich MM). FGC’s development director, Michael Wadja, led a workshop on identifying, contacting, and nurturing potential donors who may have the capacity to give larger amounts. Development work is about relationship-building, and we have just begun to do some of the groundwork that we need to fully engage these donors.
Last summer, Yearly Meeting approved a budget including a funding challenge that requires contributions from both monthly meetings and individuals. Monthly meetings only provide about 75% of our financial needs. We still need about $50,000 to meet our budgeted goal for individual giving.
We urge you to donate to NEYM. Consider setting up a GiveMonthly account of $5 or more or increase your donation to meet the financial challenges we are facing. Send a check to the treasurer or hand to a Development Committee member at Sessions. Make a gift of appreciated stock or name NEYM as a beneficiary in your will. Please help NEYM stay strong. Together, we can do it!
—Nancy Haines, clerk