My goal in taking on the Presidency was to foster an environment at SSAC that was organised and cheerful. Another successful month has passed. We are getting new members almost every day; drawn by activities and services we offer in such a welcoming setting. It’s very interesting to hear the comments of the new members as they buy their memberships. “It is so bright and friendly in here!”, “There is so much going on!”, “Look at the meals you can get!” These comments are a testament to the hard work of all our volunteers and that of our paid staff Centre Manager Gill, Chefs Emily, and Liz. Not to be forgotten is the work of our Janitor Jim who keeps our surroundings immaculately clean.

Being a non-profit society is a bit of a misnomer. We have no guaranteed income each year. We are not government funded. We do need to make enough revenue on our activities and services to pay for all our expenses. Our total expenses in a year add up to close to $500,000. So, in running a non-profit we are always looking for ways to generate income.

Our over 150 volunteers give freely of their time, but we need more than that from our membership, we need financial giving. Among our 1,400 members we have a wide range of personal financial security. This is a call to those better placed to support the Centre for the good of all members. The Centre has a rich history of generosity exemplified by the $1,000,000 raised for the renovations on the building in 2018-2019. Your generous donations, whether big or small, can make a tremendous difference in sustaining the Sechelt Seniors Activity Centre. Your donation will directly contribute to the continuity of the services we hold dear and help us continue to provide a vibrant and enriching environment for all. Here are a few reasons why your support is so crucial:

  • Preserving Our Community: By gifting to your Centre, you are investing in the preservation of our community and ensuring that future generations of seniors can benefit from the same opportunities, care, and sense of belonging that we have experienced.
  • Enriching Programs and Activities: Your gifts will help us enhance and expand our existing programs and activities, with the hope of reducing activity fees rather than increasing them. Whether it’s educational workshops, fitness classes, social events, or support groups, your contribution enables us to offer an even wider array of engaging and fulfilling experiences.
  • Creating a Lasting Legacy: By supporting the Sechelt Seniors Activity Centre, particularly through the Endowment Fund, you are not only be providing funds for current Centre needs, but you are also leaving a legacy for the seniors who will come after us. Your generosity will shape the future of our Centre and inspire others to follow your example, fostering a culture of supporting all within our community.

We understand that everyone’s circumstances are unique, and any contribution, no matter the size, is deeply appreciated. We assure you that your donations will be handled with utmost care and transparency. We will provide regular updates on how your contributions are utilized and the positive impact they have on your Centre. There are many ways that your gifts can help us build upon the great base that we already have.

For those who can afford to donate, we essentially have three vehicles for gifting to the Centre.

  • General Revenue – Gifts to general revenue are particularly vital when there are large, unexpected costs. For example, after an extensive inspection of our heating and ventilation systems there is considerable cost foreseen in work and upgrades to maintain and improve the function of the current system. Gifts to general revenue are essential for us to be able to deal with these sorts of incidental costs.
  • Affordable Lunch Program – There is no doubt that Emily and Liz produce delicious meals at an affordable price. However, despite Emily’s frugal purchasing of food items, the price of our meals has been creeping up due to inflationary pressures. The aim of the Affordable Lunch donation program is to avoid increases in the price of our entrées, and keep it fixed currently at either $10 or $12. Every member deserves a great affordable meal in the wonderful environment of the Centre.
  • SSAC Endowment Fund – In order to truly establish sustainable financial stability, we have established a SSAC Endowment Fund that will generate revenue from interest accrued each year. This fund is to be administered by the Sunshine Coast Foundation.

When you gift to us you will be asked if you wish to be acknowledged or be anonymous. The names of those donors that we are permitted to acknowledge will be honoured as Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum donations. In addition to the information seen in this edition of the ECHO, around the Centre you will see pamphlets describing our campaigns, lists honouring donors and Donation Thermometers showing our progress towards our targets. Information on donations will also be found on our website.

Donations to the SSAC Endowment Fund must be made online either through a link on the donation page of our own website or the SSAC Endowment Fund page on the Sunshine Coast Foundation website.

The General Revenue and Affordable Lunch Program donations are made through the SSAC front office. You can donate to us at the front desk by cash, cheque, credit or debit card along with a completed donation form. Completed forms and a cheque can also be mailed to the Centre. An income tax receipt can be given for any donation at or above $25. Thank you so much in anticipation of your generosity.

Richard Ward