I am writing today, on Giving Tuesday, when many organizations are making appeals for support. Under normal circumstances, we would have done the same for the Bergen County Rowing Academy. However, for BCRA these are not normal circumstances. For us it is about whether BCRA will still exist next year. Here is the situation:
We need to raise $27,801.14 by the end of January. Over the past six years we tried to keep our program fees affordable for our rowers. We would like to keep it affordable for families of various economic levels. However, the truth is that it has been difficult to keep up with our boat payments.
When we started six years ago we started with almost nothing. I personally had two singles, and we had a coxed four. To grow our fleet we had the opportunity to buy a double, a quad, and a four from Montclair High School. However, we fell short by $5,000 at the end of that year. I personally filled the gap. In successive years we purchased new boat from Vespoli as they offered to buy boats on payment plans. Used boats will usually have to be paid in full, which we cannot afford. However, each year our program fees did not quite cover our payments fully. We used future program fees to pay our current obligations, and at the end of each year, I personally filled the gap to make up the rest. This year I am no longer able to do that.
We are reaching out to you to see if you can help the Rowing Academy to catch up fully. If we can get to the point where future program fees will pay for future obligations we should be able to survive. We are nearing the completions of some of our loans, which will make the financial burden easier in the future. The question is if we can rally our community to help us right now. If we are successful then I see a bright future for the Rowing Academy. If we fail, the Rowing Academy will probably have to sell off quite a bit of our equipment.
We split up the amount into more manageable amounts. For example, we can meet our goal if we can find:
10 people willing to give $1,000 (2 gifts received)
20 people willing to give $ 500 (5 gifts received)
35 people willing to give $ 250 (8 gifts received)
We created three “Re-Founding Membership” levels. Re-founding members will be considered BCRA’s stakeholders. We will hold annual meetings where we report on our successes of the year, and present an annual budget for the future.
In addition, you can also sponsor a particular payment for a particular boat. Each payment is listed in the gray boxes to your left.
We hope that with your help we will be able to move forward into the next decade with enough water under our keel! Thank you for your kind considerations!
President & Head Coach