The Power of Creating a Positive Presence
It is no secret that 2015 is the 25th Anniversary year for CAMP Rehoboth, and that we are celebrating this milestone all year long. We are also encouraging all our friends to find ways to help us observe this special occasion—such as the Silvertini: a special drink created by Mixx to celebrate (and benefit) CAMP Rehoboth’s birthday year.
Later this year, we will officially celebrate our 25th Anniversary Silver Jubilee Weekend. I’m not giving away the details now, but please, save the weekend of October 9-11 for us. It’s a big deal, and we want everyone to be a part of it!
Though my proximity to the heart of the CAMP Rehoboth organization sometimes makes it difficult, our 25 year CAMP Rehoboth experience has given me a certain amount of perspective on the organization. Lately I’ve been thinking about what it is that has made CAMP Rehoboth a success, and I keep going back to the name. The CAMP in CAMP Rehoboth is, of course, an acronym for Creating A More Positive. We’ve said that over and over again for all of our 25 years! For all that time, we’ve been shaping the CAMP experience and our relationship to the world around us to conform to the positive affirmation dictated to us by the name of our organization. It’s a good thing too, because the enemies of LGBT freedom and acceptance do precisely the opposite on a regular basis.
The strength of the CAMP Rehoboth organization over the last 25 years has come because we have created a positive presence right in the middle of downtown Rehoboth Beach. Sure we are a LGBT and allies organization, but more than that we are a community organization and we support and connect with organizations and individuals seeking to make this a better place for all of us—gay and straight!
In the fall of 2015, we will publish our annual CAMP Rehoboth Report for 2014. We publish our report at that time of year because our 2014 financial audit happens in the summertime. In the meantime, here is my own “mini-report,” mostly for 2014, but also including some commentary about our current CAMP Rehoboth Membership Drive. Though the 2014 financials reported here are as yet unaudited, our longtime, amazing Treasurer Natalie Moss always keeps them in excellent shape for us. Natalie, by the way, has been serving CAMP Rehoboth for almost all of our 25 years, and I know I speak for all of the members of the Board and our staff when I say “thank you Natalie” for your dedicated commitment to CAMP Rehoboth.
CAMP Rehoboth Board of Directors
In January of 2014 the Board of Directors of CAMP Rehoboth embarked on a year-long Achieving Board Excellence Program through the Delaware Association of Nonprofit Advancement (DANA). As a part of that program, members of the Board worked on a variety of issues including: mission and purpose, organizational sustainability and resource management, strategic planning, review of programs and services, community visibility, ethics and accountability, self-assessment, and leadership review.
As 2014 came to an end we said farewell to two CAMP Rehoboth Board Members: Becky Craft and John Berdini. Both have served CAMP Rehoboth in many capacities over the years (and will continue to do so, I’m sure). I can’t pass this moment, however, without a special word of acknowledgment for the many years that John served on the Board of Directors—including a stint as Vice-President of the organization. John was a part of the team of people we invited to participate in the very first organizational workshop that lead to the creation of CAMP Rehoboth back in 1990. From those early years to the creation of the Founders’ Circle and the construction of our new building at 37 Baltimore Avenue, John was a part of the process. Thank you John for your many years of service to CAMP Rehoboth!
We are very excited to welcome Kathy McGuiness and Mark Purpura to the CAMP Rehoboth Board of Directors. Kathy is a Rehoboth Beach City Commissioner and Mark is an attorney and President of Equality Delaware Foundation and the author of the marriage equality legislation passed in Delaware in 2012.
CAMP Rehoboth Board Committees
The 2014 CAMP Report released later this year will contain individual reports on the work of all of our committees including: Personnel, Finance, Nominations, Operations, Volunteer Development, Program, Communications, and Development (and its sub-committees: Membership, Sponsors, Grants, and Events).
CAMP Rehoboth Financial report 2014
Any CAMP Rehoboth financial discussion has to include commentary about our history. 25 years ago our organization began at 39 Baltimore Avenue, in the tiny space that is today one half of Lori’s Café. Since then, CAMP Rehoboth has purchased the property at 39 Baltimore and the adjacent one at 37 Baltimore Avenue, renovated the main office building, constructed the new wing of the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center behind it, and redesigned and rebuilt the CAMP Rehoboth Courtyard. We were in the middle of the new building construction when the great recession hit in 2007.
It is, I believe, a tribute to the generous nature of our supporters, and their trust in us that we weathered that financial storm as well as we did. After it passed, we were left with property appraised at half its pre-recession assessment and a higher mortgage than we had originally planned. As can be seen from this financial data from the last four years, CAMP Memberships continued to grow in 2014, and we are especially pleased that our net assets are making it possible for us to put a dent in our long-term debt—and, most importantly, increase funding for program services at the same time.
Please note: the 2014 financials reported on these pages are unaudited at this time. 2011 was a full audit, 2012 and 2013 were audit reviews, 2014 will be a full audit.
CAMP Rehoboth Membership Drive 2015
As can be seen from our 2014 CAMP financials, membership in our organization plays a huge role in our financial health. We are deeply grateful to all of our members for their willingness to support CAMP Rehoboth on a continuing basis.
Beginning this January, the CAMP Membership Committee has been hard at work conducting its 2015 CAMP Rehoboth Membership Drive, and we’re very excited by the excellent results thus far. Since 2015 is our 25th anniversary year, however, the Membership Committee has increased its goal for this year’s drive to 125 new or upgraded memberships. We’ve still got a few weeks to reach that goal, and as can be seen in our House and Heart Membership Thermometer we’re almost half way there!
Membership has benefits, of course! Not only does it support our organization, it includes a free collectible-series Membership Mug (Check out this year’s mug on the cover of Letters); advance ticket sales, and discounts to CAMP Rehoboth events and sponsorships when signed up to some of the Rainbow Membership levels.
Most of all, membership shows a passionate commitment to the work and mission of CAMP Rehoboth. Creating a more positive world is an ongoing effort that takes place on a daily basis throughout our community. To become a member simply go to the CAMP Rehoboth website at camprehoboth.com and click on the Become a Member button on the home page, stop in to see us at the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center at 37 Baltimore Avenue, or call us at 302-227-5620.
Murray Archibald, CAMP Co-founder and President of the Board of Directors of CAMP Rehoboth, is an artist in Rehoboth Beach.