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President's Message
President's Message -- Show your passion!

By Jody A. Cameron, Connecticut State Grange President

  APRIL 5, 2014 --

When it was said I was planning on moving the map in the CT room at the New England Grange Building members rallied around “saving” the map.

Last month when we talked about the actions of the State Grange Executive Committee ceasing the operations of Camp Berger in 2014, members again rallied to “save” Camp Berger.  I appreciate your passion and commitment to your Grange.

So, explain to me then why when we talk about membership growth, Granges closing, Granges being relevant in their community many members don’t seem to be concerned.  They almost give you a blank stare, like it is not their issue to deal with.  How would we survive if the majority of our members felt this way?

In November the National Grange will vote on a $2.00 per member dues increase.  The largest purpose for this increase is the decline in membership nationally.  We have an opportunity to delay or vote down this increase and that is by every Grange having a net gain in membership.  

Let’s do some basic math.

Your Grange has 35 members; you currently pay $12.00 per member per year in dues to National.  35 x $12.00= $420.00

Dues increase passes at National in November and your Granges 35 members absorb the $2.00 dues increase.  35 x $14.00= $490.00

Now, your 35 members go out and secure 10 new members a 25% increase in membership making your total membership 45.  45 X $12.00= $540.00

If this increase goes through I see the same thing happening nationally that happened here in CT two years ago.  Granges are going to clean up their books to make sure their membership rolls are accurate and the total number of members will drop.  I just want to add hear, you should ALWAYS be making sure your records are accurate, not waiting for an event like this. Now we are working with fewer members paying more.  This will ultimately take us in the opposite direction financially.  But, if we increase our membership nationally by 25%, it is not hard to do; the National Grange will increase its revenues by almost $200,000, with no additional burden on its community Granges and members.

Only Community Grange Members have the ability to stop the declines and transform this great organization, restoring us to the powerful numbers we once saw.  The Grange is needed as much if not more today that it was in our early years.  With the overall population increasing a healthy and sustainable, hopefully local, food source is need in every community.  Remember poverty and starvation does not discriminate.  As the world seems to continually want to fight, the desire for tighter knit communities are more and more needed.

I am pleading with every member to show that same passion I know you have and “save” your Grange.  Together, I know we can do it.


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