For those of you who pay attention to details, you may have noticed that the donation-o-meter on the website made a significant jump this morning.
This is not a glitch.
On Friday, my wife Jamie and I met with Corey and Katherine Huber from the Fraser Family Foundation. At the end of an in-depth conversation about the purpose and goals of 1P5, they handed me a check from the foundation in the amount of $10,000.
I cannot thank the Foundation enough for its generous contribution, and the confidence they have shown in our nascent endeavor. We are building this organization from the ground up, and it simply isn’t possible without help like this. we are now nearly 50% of the way to our end-of-year goal.
I also have to thank the Hubers for another thing: their interest in financially supporting 1P5 lit the fire under me to get cracking on our application for tax-exempt status, which is one of the requirements to receive charitable donations from foundations such as theirs. As an organization that depends largely on private contributions for its operating expenses, I knew this would be an essential step, but it was a daunting one.
Through a friend, I was able to identify an attorney who specializes in helping Catholic non-profits. Through my incredible wife, the paperwork got done in record time. Before I knew it, a corporation was formed and our 1023 was filed with the IRS – which means that upon approval, we will become an official 501(c)(3) organization.
This is a big deal. It’s a big deal in multiple ways. I’ll touch on them briefly:
- If we are approved, donations to 1P5 will be tax-deductible for U.S. Citizens.
- If we are approved, some donations already made to 1P5 will be retroactively included in our tax-exempt status, and thus, tax-deductible. The guidance on this is somewhat murky, but it appears safe to say that donations made on or after our filing date of October 28th, 2014 should be included. Please don’t stop the donations pending the outcome of the filing! If we’re approved — and there’s no reason to believe we won’t be — any contributions from now on should be included in our new status.
- We’re going to be having to build a lot more structure into the organization in the coming weeks and months, and I ask for your patience as this may occasionally pre-empt content schedules, just like the podcast that got bumped last Friday.
- In addition to overseeing all content, site administration, ad sales, social media, and the like, I’m going to have to roll up my sleeves and get a handle on non-profit governance. I was a member of the senior staff at a 501(c)(3) for three years, and sat in on monthly board meetings, so I’m not entirely ignorant, but there were others whose job it was to keep the thing on the rails, and I didn’t get deeply into all the minutiae. Now, knowing how to handle the minutiae is going to be part of the job. There’s a learning curve. It will require a great deal of coffee.
The bottom line is that administratively, we are still a very small organization. And by “small” I mean mostly just me — and now my wife — who is helping with the sort of things that my ADD-addled creative brain can’t process. Over time, this will have to change. Too much on my plate makes growing and managing our content offering challenging, to say the least.
This is why we need you to help us to reach our goal of $30,000 by the end of 2014. I think we can do more and better, but it takes resources to do that.
I can’t thank you enough for all the help you’ve given so far.
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