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From the Executive Director

EEFC Fundraising and Outreach

By Jay House Samios, Fall 2014
Jay House Samios

Jay House Samios

Welcome to the second issue of the all-new, online Kef Times. I’m delighted to release to you the second issue in what we are planning as a thrice-yearly publication. I encourage you to share the articles you find most interesting, and let Julie and the rest of the team know what you think of their work.

Thanks to volunteers, we are moving forward with an improved database that will better equip us to communicate effectively with different groups of people, including funders, potential campers and new communities entirely. Since East Coast camp, a team comprised of Jeanne Busch, Noel Kropf and Martie Ripson has stepped up, taking on the task of assessing and setting up a new, more powerful database.

I am also happy to provide the following updates to our work in Fundraising and Outreach.

Fundraising

  • I am in conversation with the Good Family Foundation, which previously funded Forum Folkloristika, about a proposal for subsequent funding. Foundation representatives and I are discussing a project that is a good fit for both the EEFC and the Foundation. That conversation will be ongoing through this fall, and I expect to know more about our next steps before the end of 2014. In addition, Board Member Nancy Leeper has agreed to take on a preliminary search for foundations that offer grant opportunities that are a good match for the EEFC.
  • At both of our camps, we raised a grand total of $33,000 through auctions, pazar and donation stores, which means we exceeded at-camp fundraising goals by nine percent.

Outreach

  • This year, we have put together a core team dedicated to focusing on marketing the EEFC and our workshops. Elena Erber is the chair of the committee charged with this work, and we were recently joined by Eva Salina as a committee member. With this team in place, we have a new focus on marketing for the purpose of making more people aware of our workshops and bringing more (and new) people to camp. The team will work closely with Workshop Manager Rachel MacFarlane and other Board members to target specific groups, such as past campers who have not returned in a while, past scholarship recipients and people whom we don’t reach yet.
  • One arrow in our quiver is the scholarship money that we raised at the two auctions. We anticipate this being a powerful tool for reaching people who are not currently coming to camp.
  • We are also working with a volunteer marketing expert to better understand the EEFC’s brand image (how we are perceived, rather than who we think we are). The purpose of this is to help us do a better job communicating with the groups mentioned above, as well as to help us be clear about what our current practices do communicate, whether intentionally or not.

Next month, look for an update from me on what’s happening with the Program Committee, the fall board meeting, and the latest word on the organization’s finances.

© 2014 East European Folklife Center