Seeking that pot at the end of the rainbow for NPO's

"Great goals make you stretch.  They absolutely can take you well beyond anything you could possibly imagine!  The most important part of setting great goals is not the goals themselves, but the person you become in the stretch" - Fran Briggs 

"Chance is always powerful.  Let your hook be always cast;  in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish" - Ovid 

My career choice of the past 3 years has not been an easy one.  Fundraising.  The art of asking people for money for something you believe in passionately.  The ability to hear 100 no's for every yes you get.  The knowledge that you can work for weeks on piles of appeals and re-tell your story to a myriad of people without finding a "fish".  It is probably all at once the most interesting and diverse but most soul destroying choice of work.

Most NPO's currently find themselves in very challenging times.  The National Lottery Board is still trying to catch up and we all wait with bated breath for our appeal outcomes from our last appeal ..... more than a year ago.  Corporates find themselves covered in a deluge of needs from an ever growing number of NPO's.  In Gauteng alone we compete for money against hundreds of others in a similar boat.  Paying residential fees is becoming more and more of a challenge for many people who place their family, friends and loved ones in our care.  With almost half of the mentally disabled ladies we care for (36 out of 88), being adult orphans, we find ourselves increasingly pressed to find the funding to carry the R9 000 cost per adult each month.  

If you have a family you will be all too familiar with the cost of food, clothing, medicine, toiletries, bedding, blankets, outings etc etc ...... and everyone we care for is part of our "home" and we want them to have the same cared for feeling.  The eToll is a massive problem as our Government in their wisdom, have not given a subsidy or reduced fee for NPO's such as us. We are up and down on the freeway all day long .... doing collections of items kindly donated to our 2nd hand shop, taking residents to the doctors, dentists and the Kalafong Hospital.  The bill is mounting.  It is not a recoverable cost for us.  As a 105 year old NPO our 8.4 hectares comes with a preventative maintenance and general maintenance bill that is scary.  Many of our 8 houses that house the 88 ladies, are in need of major upgrades ..... these amount to six figures at a time.  

In between there are the great moments like today.  An invitation to attend a meeting with a major corporate.  A guy with great insight, not only into the world of CSI but also into my world. Plans are made, meetings set ...... another day in my life.  A good one.  

And there will be many more.  Because if I get a donation 1 in 10 times or 1 in 100 times ...... perseverance is what it takes.  And I am nothing if not passionate. 



Irene Homes for the Mentally Disabled

2 Albert Road  Irene South Africa
Tel 012. 6671035
Mobile +27 790362262
Fax 012. 6672888

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till next time
c'est la vie xxx




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