Nearly 100 friends and supporters gathered together to celebrate our 18th Birthday in Geneva on 13th May.
At the party, which immediately followed our AGM, some changes and a new pledge scheme were announced. Here is an extract from Ted Talbot‘s speech given on the evening:
“Dear Members and Friends of Friends of India,
I want to share with you all a decision that has been taken at our 2017 AGM – that we are streamlining, simplifying and modernizing the FOI organisation:
Streamlining – which means that we are not looking to take on any new projects outside of our four chosen areas of support which are:
- giving Dalit children access to education;
- giving love and a new life to HIV AIDS orphans;
- giving a new dimension of music to the lives of blind children;
- giving women skills so they can earn a salary to help feed, clothe and educate their children.
Simplifying – which means we are changing our approach to membership and fundraising
Modernizing – which means we are going to use social media as much as possible for communication.
We want all of you, our supporters, to be united with us, as members of the FOI family, in what we strive to achieve – but without the formality of a membership fee. Why have members been paying a fee and getting no special benefit for it? We have money in our operational support budget and so we have set the current membership fee at zero francs. Instead, anyone who gives money to FOI is automatically a member and (if Swiss residents) can deduct their donation for tax purposes.
So how do we intend raising money to continue to support our key projects? We would still like you to suggest a gift to FOI instead of flowers at a memorial or a Christmas/birthday present, BUT we are asking every one of you to pledge your support for what we are doing by pledging a sum of money – large or small, to show solidarity with us and enable us in turn to pledge with confidence, our support for the requested needs of our implementing partners.
We are asking you to pledge your support now – by filling out the FOI Pledge Form and sending it to me, Ted Talbot, as shown on the form. Your pledge remains totally confidential and may be cancelled at any time.”
Ted Talbot, FOI Treasurer
At the celebration party on May 13, we received pledges for Chf. 12’500. Thank you!