As we move into 2014, WANT remains in a healthy financial condition. This past year was somewhat experimental for WANT; we on the board wanted to know whether an investment in more community giving, more community events, and more membership outreach would be worth spending part of the organization’s reserves. With a substantial reserve relative to annual expenses, this was a low-risk proposition, and we believe it paid off.
Our membership currently stands at about 130 households and businesses, compared to a projection of about 60 members for 2012; our income from membership dues has grown by over 140% in just two years. The new block party, held this past July, was a resounding success, leading to increased interest in WANT and increased donations. WANT was able to give $1150 to sponsor Care for Real and the Andersonville Farmers’ Market.
Our approved 2013 budget had anticipated greater expenses than income. While our income did not quite reach the amount projected, neither did our expenses, so WANT ends 2013 in the financial position that was anticipated a year ago. While income exceeded expectations in the area of membership dues and donations, it fell short on advertising and fundraisers. This shortfall was in part due to a miscalculation of the number of ads possible to sell (because the newsletter is shorter than it has been in the past) and in part due to the fact that one planned fundraiser was not able to be held because there was no room on the business partner’s schedule. Both of these issues will be rectified in 2014. Regardless, WANT will end 2013 with about $10,000 in the bank – roughly the same as the amount it started with – and is well-positioned moving into 2014.
Going forward, WANT plans to continue its focus on increasing membership and providing social events that will help to bind us all as a community. We encourage all our members to get actively involved in WANT, whether by working in our community garden, helping at an event, or serving on a committee.