19 Sep

Help Us Decide the Future of the Peace & Justice Center!

The Peace & Justice Center is at a turning point. If left to operate as it is now, the Center will have to spend down reserve funds to pay rent and staff salaries and will likely close within a couple of years. Seeing this future as unacceptable, the Steering Committee formed an Ad Hoc Committee charged with developing several proposals to revamp the Center to best carry out our mission and to remain financially viable for many years to come.

Payroll is our largest expense. Maintaining paid staff to oversee the Center is essential.  We need someone to take phone calls, respond to e-mails, send e-mail alerts, and network with other organizations in a reliable and regular manner. Volunteers can and do contribute a lot — indeed we cannot continue without them — but we need someone to coordinate volunteers.

We have a spacious office in an ideal location with amenities such as a kitchen, a bathroom, and a storage room. A physical presence in the community is valuable — many people enjoy the gatherings we host here and use this welcoming space to hold meetings. However, many of our events (Harvest Supper, End Violence Together, Martin Luther King Day) are held at other venues. Staff could work from home.  Is having this space essential to our mission?

Projected budget for 10/1/2018-9/30/2019

Expenses

  • Personnel – 35 hour/week $30,275
  • Office space$12,150
  • Print newsletter$1,850
  • Events $1,150
  • Programs $3,925
  • Total projected expenses $49,425

(Note that most (85%) of the budget expenses are for personnel and space.)

Income

  • Donations, major donors, individual and organizational memberships  $33,100
  • Event income $1,700
  • Grants $2,000
  • Miscellaneous income (interest, space use, etc.) $1,700
  • Total projected income $38,500                               

Our annual General Assembly is scheduled for Saturday, November 10, from 3 to 5 pm at the UU Church, 120 Park St, in Bangor, just prior to the Harvest Supper that evening.  The Ad Hoc Committee is proposing four possible scenarios for consideration and decision.  No matter what we decide, all of these scenarios will need fleshing out with your support in the coming months. We will have the opportunity to engage in creative problem-solving to make our vision work.

Scenario #1: Keep staff and space essentially the same with changes to increase income generated by renting space, increased rental fees and requests for donations at films and other events, more active fundraising and membership development. Generating significantly more income is key to this scenario.

Scenario #2: Reduce or eliminate payroll and/or office space and eliminate the print newsletter in a bare bones version of Scenario #1

Scenario #3: Partner with another like-minded organization to pool our resources, share staff, space, and other expenses.

Scenario #4:  Dissolve the Peace & Justice Center.

We will need all of our voices, understanding, and commitment (as peace volunteers,  contributors, fundraisers, etc.).  Please do three things:

  1. Put the November 10 Peace and Justice Center General Assembly on your calendar, plan to attend, and encourage others to be there and
  2. Respond positively to the fundraising letter which you will receive in October.
  3. Actively consider the question, “What is your commitment to the future of the Center?”

If you cannot attend the General Assembly in person, but would like to give input on our four possible scenarios, follow this link to a form to submit your preferences – https://goo.gl/forms/8A1sX3B9qZvGGYI72 – or email us at info@peacectr.org, call us at 207-942-9343, or write us at 96 Harlow St, Suite 100, Bangor, 04401.

For more information contact Mary Dolan at mdolanme@gmail.com

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