The American Rose Society is open for business. We want it to stay that way.
In fact, the ARS Board of Directors made some sound but tough strategic business decisions that will guide the future of our Society through 2011 and many years beyond.
We are still here to provide service to our loyal members and to the public.
See how the Campaign is coming! Click here for numbers.
A letter from Diane Sommers, ARS Treasurer and 100 Grand Campaign Director
The American Rose Society is launching a new annual fund-raising campaign to support the ongoing operations of the ARS: The 100 Grand Campaign. The ARS membership learned about the campaign at the Member’s Meeting during our Atlanta National Convention in October 2010.
Many may wonder why we need such a campaign in addition to our regular Annual Fund/Patron Campaign. As Treasurer of the American Rose Society and Campaign Director, I want to share some thoughts with you on that subject:
- Most nonprofit organizations across the country have felt the downturn in the economy. While we are fortunate to have generous members who have helped us through these times, challenges in cash flow have persisted and grown over the last few years.
- The American Rose Society has been very disciplined at maintaining and lowering costs. Over the last four years, we have reduced our overall costs by 19 percent, while membership benefits have increased, including a much-improved bi-monthly magazine.
- The Finance Committee and Board of Directors collectively spent seven hours reviewing and discussing financial alternatives during the Atlanta Board Meeting. Their decision was to introduce this new annual campaign instead of reducing membership benefits or raising membership dues. American Rose Society President Jeff Wyckoff and his wife Kathy have been most generous in donating $5,000 to kick off The 100 Grand Campaign. The ARS Headquarters staff has committed to raise $2,000 for the campaign.
- It is important to note that The 100 Grand Campaign is supplemental to our regular Annual Fund/Patron Campaign to which you have given generously in the past. Both campaigns must achieve their 2011 goals in order for us to be successful.
- Short term versus long term? The use of such a campaign is considered a short-term solution for our financial situation. That does not mean it will occur only in 2011. On a long-term basis, the Board’s approach is to grow our ARS Endowment Trust to support the ongoing operations of the society, much like the ARS Maintenance Endowment Trust supports the operations of the gardens. Principal in the trust will remain untouched, with a percentage of the earnings distributed to the ARS each year for ongoing operations. Established in 2006, the ARS Endowment Trust has a current principal of $137,634. It needs to grow substantially before it can support society operations. I am pleased that a grant from the Maintenance Endowment Trust has been received to support a new position at the ARS: Director of Planned Giving. This individual will assist us in growing all of our Trusts to support our mission regarding rose education and research for many years to come. Since we have received a grant, operating funds will not pay for this position.
- While the District Directors have committed to raise these funds in The 100 Grand Campaign, they cannot do it alone. Each District established a goal based on the number of local societies, ARS members and local society members in it. Clearly, few districts or local rose societies have the funds simply to write a check. This is a campaign no different from your local PTA campaign, Girl Scout cookie sale, etc. We can have fun with this, maybe increase our membership with some new activities and, of course, support the ARS while we do it. Whether your local rose society members are ARS members or not, everyone has benefited from the ARS – it is now our turn to help the ARS!
You will hear more details regarding The 100 Grand Campaign and your district goals in the next few weeks. Check back with this page for district results and more great ideas to support fund-raising at your local rose society and district events. It would be great to hear from you as you develop new ideas and share how they worked for your group!
The 100 Grand Campaign will also include some very nice prizes for the Districts that exceed their goals by the largest percentage. Prizes will include airline tickets to a future ARS Convention and discounts to future ARS events.
I want to thank you for your generosity in supporting the American Rose Society over the years and for your support in making The 100 Grand Campaign a success. Together, we will ensure the ARS grows and flourishes in 2011 and beyond, just like our roses.
How can you help raise money for the 100 Grand Campaign?
- Ask for donations in your registration forms for District meetings.
- Organize a rose sale.
- Hold a silent auction at your local and district events.
- Sell raffle tickets at your meetings — the winner receives half of the funds while the other half goes to the 100 Grand Campaign.
- Participate in speaking engagements or set up seminars and ask for an honorarium benefiting the 100 Grand Campaign.
- Decorate and sell rose containers at your District meeting.
- Hold a rummage sale as part of your educational symposiums or rose shows.
- Design and sell a local society t-shirt and donate the profit to the 100 Grand Campaign.
- Decorate a hat with roses and pass it around.
- Provide homemade cookies at public functions with a donation jar.
- Buy rose jewelry wholesale and sell at meetings or shows.
- Ask members to donate their unwanted used books for sale on Amazon or to a used bookstore.
- Provide local business with a donation jar.
- Organize a bake sale as part of your local events.
- Auction off gardening services.
- Work with local restaurants to hold an ARS night to receive a portion of the night’s profits.
Better Homes and Gardening: Rose Gardening
Click here to order a case of Rose Gardening by Jeff Wyckoff, President of ARS
When you sell the books a portion of the profit goes to the 100 Grand Campaign!
Rose Gardening retails for $19.95, and comes with a coupon good for a year’s free subscription to Better Homes and Gardens magazine. Its wholesale price from John Wiley & Sons is $179.55 for a case of 18, plus sales tax of $19.18, and shipping.