I was asked by my hubby a few days ago, 'Can you define your organization?' I am sure my facial expressions were, 'huh, what, confusion,' as he restated it this way:
'Are you a foundation, organization, non-profit, sole proprietor, ministry? How do you define what you do?'
First of all, Layers of Hope - Quilting 911 cannot really be defined as a sole proprietorship because I don't own it, it belongs to all quilters who want to reach out an help 911 operators, but on paper it might be considered that, but we don't have employee's, I don't paid or should I say, when money comes in I don't take it as payment but use it to further our purpose.
A Foundation is really just another term for non-profit organization however a foundation usually donates money to help support other organizations or causes such as in our area the Bishop Foundation which provides scholarships for students, provides for school aged children to go to Seattle to see the Nutcracker ballet, has a camp for children, etc. In other words, a foundation takes in money to use for its own purposes and usually is set up by an individual or a family such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. So, no, we are not a foundation!
A non-profit is more like we are with the exception we haven't applied for non-profit status as of this writing, we do not have a board of directors (though I have people who have stepped up and say when the day comes, they would love to be on the first BOD), we do not have employee's, I do not get paid and everyone works on volunteering their time, their materials, their money, etc.
Wikipedia states this about a non-profit: '
Designation as a nonprofit does not mean that the organization does
not intend to make a profit, but rather that the organization has no
owners and that the funds realized in the operation of the organization
will not be used to benefit any owners.'
So maybe, technically, we can be defined as a non-profit since we have no owners and any monies that come in, go right back into more quilts, thread, postage, etc.
I think an organization truly in my opinion can be any group of people that are organized enough to come together for a purpose. There are government organizations, non-profit organizations, for-profit organizations, charitable organizations, etc. So loosely we might be considered an organization but since we are all scattered in the wind across the United States and the world, I will say, no to this.'
Ministry is really an organization who comes together to spread or preach their faith. While I am a believer in Jesus Christ and I believe He has His hand in getting me to do something for others, we are not going to preach or expound our beliefs on others. We can say we are praying, have prayed, hope they are blessed, but I do not allow religious tracts or anything else to be sent to our recipients, so no, we aren't a ministry.
Charity probably comes closest to defining Layers of Hope - Quilting 911 as it is the act of benevolent giving and caring and we give and we care as we reach out to others with our quilts, cards and love. It can also be defined as the unconditional act of love and kindness and what is more unconditional than making a quilt for people who are hurting that you have never met and probably never will meet?
So, if I were to define Layers of Hope - Quilting 911 I would say it is a Non-Profit Charitable Organization in its baby stage, just trying to learn to stand, a bit wobbly, falling down and getting back up and how far we walk depends on me, you, others you let know about us and truly, time.
Time will tell if we will be able to wobble walk or loose the wobblies and run like the wind. I personally am praying that we will be another one of those wonderful quilting charities where the sky is our limit!
Where one day I will look back at where we began and what we have become and say, 'Wow! We did it together! We made it!'
Blessings to all of you!