Your membership means everything to TLC. When added with all the other memberships, it makes a huge difference. In fact, it means the difference between The Land Conservancy of McHenry County and, well, no TLC at all.
We don't receive any government funding - there is no line on your McHenry County property tax bill for The Land Conservancy. There is no "check off" on your state tax return for TLC, and no federal appropriation to support our work.
No, TLC is able to do what we do because individuals in McHenry County and the surrounding area CHOOSE to support us with their annual membership contributions. We exist because local people purchase tickets to the events we hold - like Art of the Land - or they buy oak trees and rainbarrels.
I was raised in a family where one did not talk about money - it was considered tacky. And now I run an organization where I must think about and ask for money - a lot. It doesn't come naturally to me, especially the times when I have to ask people to make a donation. I don't want to be pushy or seem too needy.
I'll catch myself saying things like "oh, we're doing fine" when a member asks how things are going financially, even though my mind is thinking "I'm worried because our membership renewal rate is down." Or I want to say "we had a couple of grant awards come in lower than expected, which means $2500 I have to raise somewhere," but I don't because I don't want anyone to worry.
Add to all that the fact that this is a sluggish economy. Maybe it's not a recession any more, but this sure has to be one of the slowest recoveries ever. I talked to a member recently who apologized for letting his membership lapse. He explained to me that he lost his job two years ago and only just got a new one, so he hoped to renew soon. He wanted to be sure I knew that he was still thinking about TLC, and that he still supported everything we do and wants to do more as soon as he is able.
The conversation reminded me that TLC means a lot to our members too. And that is why they choose to send us a tax-deductible membership contribution.
You could send us yours today!