The Executive Director of Ty Watson House, Erin Girling, and the Alberni Valley Hospice Society Board of Directors Chairperson, Jan Cole, discuss just what this donation means to Ty Watson House.
Jan explains, “Because we receive minimal operational funding for Ty Watson House, a lot of our energy has to be focused on securing funds just to pay the bills every month. As a board, we are in constant planning mode for fund-raising which takes time and energy away from our mission to provide for the whole person in our care.”
Erin adds: “The reality around the grant situation is that very few are available for operating costs so we must constantly rely on our incredibly generous community base just to ensure that we can cover the essentials. Also, many of the grants are “one-offs” or they are available annually but are contingent upon reapplication every year. Even if a grant is available on more than a one-time basis, the goal posts can change from year to year and you can never be sure that you will qualify again the following year. This leaves a great deal of uncertainty about where funds are going to be coming from year to year. This support that we are receiving from Pot Luck Ceramics is vitally important in that it has the potential to allow us some security for maintenance and it will allow more of our energies to be refocused on longer-term planning and more creative programming that can address the emotional, social and spiritual needs of our residents. We work hard to do that now but we must rely heavily on an exceptional staff who is willing to be stretched to the limit and on our incredibly selfless volunteers.”
“The way we are currently funded, we can never consider doing any five-year planning,” Jan adds. “To make an emergency expenditure, such as a new furnace, we have to scramble immediately to raise funds again to fill that deficit. We have no cushion for emergencies and we have little room for any discretionary decision-making around programming. This money allows us to breathe a little…it eases the anxiety that is a constant for any non-profit organization. We are very grateful that the members of Pot Luck Ceramics believe so strongly in the value of Ty Watson House and its commitment to compassionate end-of-life care. The Fundraising Co-op board and its members are passionate about their mission to provide stability in the funding scene, not only for Ty Watson, but ultimately for many non-profit organizations in the Valley. We are honoured to be the first recipients of their efforts and we cannot thank them enough.”