Message to the Community -
This past September, the Board of Directors of Muscular Dystrophy Canada held its Annual General Meeting. While you may have already had an opportunity to read our annual report, I wanted to take a moment to speak to you directly about this past and the future.
First and foremost, to our members, volunteers, donors, fire fighters, partners and clients – a sincere and heartfelt thank you for your continued support and dedication to our organization and to ensuring we are able to deliver on our mission.
These last few years have been a struggle for many in the not for profit sector. The demands on us, are just like on any other business – costs are rising, money is harder and harder to raise and the need to stay current with things like technology has forced us to think differently about how we operate.
When I joined MDC, some 16 months ago, I met with and listened to many of you – asking a few simple questions – what can we do better, what do we need to do more of and where are we falling short. You responded in a clear and consistent manner – more money for mission, less bureaucracy, more communication about topics that you care about and more transparency on how we used your donation dollars.
My mandate was clear – and throughout the last year we have carved a path that will enable us to deliver on what you expect from us. More money to mission less money of administration and fundraising. This is outlined in our strategic plan – Pushing Beyond Possible, which is available on our website.
It has been a transformative year for the entire organization, not always easy or without its bumps and bruises, but the focus remained steadfastly locked on the things that mattered most.
We have celebrated our successes, recognizing the invaluable work of our staff and volunteers and examined our shortcomings for the necessary learnings that can and will, move us forward.
Decisions were made and steps taken with the utmost care and attention to details. The rallying cry of “We do things right and we do the right things” was always what we strived for.
That said, like other not for profit organizations, we know we need work hard at bringing our costs down so that we can increase our impact and our mission.
We are doing that – we have refocused our spending with the goal of hitting the Canadian Revenue Agency guideline of $0.35 cents. That means more of your money will be spent directly on mission and less on administration and fundraising. While we have made early progress, we have more work to do and we are committed to that goal. This was and remains my number one priority.
At the heart of each and every decision, we continue to ask ourselves and each other – what is best for our clients and families, our team and, ultimately, what is in the best interest of MDC and its mission.
Investing more of your donations in research, and programs and services as well as influencing positive changes in public policy will impact even more Canadians and their families living with the reality of a neuromuscular disorder.
This progress would not be possible without the continued support, dedication, and leadership of a very committed team nationwide. From coast to coast, we are fortunate to have staff members at every level of MDC that want to make a positive contribution and to be leaders.
Furthermore, we have been supported by a remarkable volunteer Board of Directors. Without their steady hand, we would not have been able to make the progress we have.
Our work is amplified throughout this country by our volunteers, fire fighters, donors, researchers, funders and various partners who are all united by a common purpose. Our work would not be possible without this grassroots, community- commitment.
In the words of our fire fighters – Until there is a cure – there is us