As we consider the costs for our proposed projects (furnace, sign, and the bathroom/fire exit projects, the obvious question is how we pay for these? Our finances will affect what our choices can be, and the impact of those choices on our long-term survival.
- Grants: The Friends have already applied for another grant from the VT Cultural Facilities program, which helped us with a grant for $20,000 for the new ADA entrance and accessible bathroom on the main floor in 2008. They are also looking at other grant possibilities, and would like to hear from others who know about grants, employer matching-contribution plans, and other opportunities
- Challenge benefit concluding Sept. 6th: The Friends will also be asking for increased donations from the Grange and dance communities in the annual Challenge Fundraiser. This is the yearly appeal first to people who can pledge substantial donations, and then to the dance community that loves the Hall, to match that amount. The goal this year will be to raise $4,000 in all, with $2,000 to help the Grange with its operating expenses, and the remainder to help the FCCGH to finance projects. Donations will be accepted starting with the second dance in August, on the 16th, and the fundraiser will conclude at the Sept. 6th dance (with Nils Fredland and the Free Raisins), featuring a dessert potluck and many opportunities to help us reach our goal. Contact Patty Giavara: firstname.lastname@example.org if you can pitch in, in any way!
- State Grange financing help: The Vermont State Grange loaned us money for our big project in 2008, building the ADA entrance and the upstairs, accessible bathroom. We’ve begun conversations with them about the possibility of another loan to help us with some of these projects. This will not be a grant, but could spread out the cost over time, to let us get the benefits of increased income and reduced costs that we are aiming for.
- Loans from Grange members and friends: We will be asking for low-interest loans to help us fund the construction of our bathrooms and fire exits, even if we get the grant we have applied for, since we don’t get the grant money until the project is done! We could use loans as a way to pay for the furnace replacement as well, since we hope to be saving money by investing in efficient, appropriately sized furnace(s). Could you help us?
- Volunteer labor: a few people have asked me if they can help with the renovation projects, and we have included donated labor as part of our “matching” for the grant applications, in fact. We expect to ask for help demolishing the old bathrooms and the back stairs, to make way for the new construction. I’d like to start signing up volunteers! Under the “sign” article, you’ll also see a request for help digging a trench for the wire for our sign, and there will be more opportunities for help on that project as well. We know we have hard-working and talented community members, and will need to tap their efforts to get these projects done at a cost we can afford.
- Donations from Grange members and friends: We’ll certainly be looking for outright gifts, specifically donated to support the furnace or the renovations. Would you want a plaque on one of our new toilets, to show our appreciation? Maybe you’d prefer to have a plaque above one of our new sinks, which actually mix the hot and cold water? Or on one of the curtained “changing rooms” we plan to build to make places for people to change without tying up bathroom space. Maybe you want to just make an anonymous donation…we won’t turn you away! Let us know what works for you!