Lorne Cutler report to General Membership December 10, 2015
In November, President Gary Sealey was approached by an anonymous friend of the FCA who wished to make a donation to the FCA. The purpose of the grant to improve the administration and operation of the organization. On December 2, I met with the individual who has made the donation, to seek further details as to the intent of the donation and to discuss as to how it might be used. The donor has requested that their identity not be made public beyond Gary and myself.
The donation was for $1000 with a further $1000 to be contributed by this individual over each of the next two years subject the funds meeting their objectives.
The FCA has become very effective over the past few years, but has only been able to focus on a few areas due to lack of volunteers and knowledge. While we would like to focus on many additional areas we don’t have the resources. The donor wants us to look at what would make a difference in what we normally do. A number of areas were identified where the FCA could augment its existing capabilities if it had access to additional resources. The purpose of the grant is to improve our capacity. It is not to directly hire planners or other professionals to advance our cases.
The donor has provided $1,000 to date and is willing to provide an additional $2,000 over the following two years. Ultimately, however, the FCA’s ability to respond and engage a wider community will be dependent on funding. The grantor sees their money as seed money for the FCA to ultimately pursue other funding opportunities.
In the first year possible uses of the money were:
- Improve administrative tasks particularly around the website – posting minutes; monitoring chat boards, community calendar
- Special seminars for members that will help to improve member capacity
- Examine other similar community umbrella organizations in Canada and the U.S. to see how they fund themselves and from where
- Identify sources potential funding for the FCA
- Development a business case in order to submit grant applications to potential granting bodies: ie: City of Ottawa, Trillium Foundation, Private Foundations, Private Companies, Community Foundation of Ottawa, etc.
- Find and hire, if volunteers are not available, high school or university students who can assist in the above.
The use of the funds in the second and third year will depend on the success of use of the grant in this first year. It is expected that the initial $1,000 would be used by April 30, 2016 and we would report back to the membership at our June 2016 AGM on how the money has been used.
[Lorne recommended that a small committee be struck to come up with firmer plans for the use of the money and to develop a schedule for proceeding. His motion was approved.]