ASHLAND FOOD ANGELS – GRASS ROOTS FINANCING
Finances are often a challenge for small non-profits, and the Ashland Food Angels (AFA) have survived for over twenty years on a very small budget. We have processed and donated over a quarter million pounds of food yearly for most of those years, and likely that much or more in clothing for the past half dozen years, even though we have had a yearly budget of around $5000 – $7000.
Our little grass roots operation is successful for several reasons:
* All the people involved donate their time, including the founder and director, Pamala Joy.
* The food and clothing we pass on are all freely donated from the community.
* We have focused on simplicity and frugality through our entire operation, avoiding frills and extras.
* When something is essential, we seek to get it by donation or at a reduced fee.
* We operate out of a garage, similar to a small home business, avoiding the high cost of rent.
Funds for running AFA have come from several local sources. In the first few years Pamala Joy financed everything herself. As the volunteer base grew, it was decided that volunteers would also contribute financially, usually at the rate of $1 per month. In 2003 AFA applied for and received a community grant of $1500 from the Ashland Food Cooperative and each subsequent year received a sum from $500 to $1500. For the past several years AFA has received a donation from $1000 to $4000 from the Empty Bowls project, and individuals give donations from a few dollars upwards. Our website (ashlandfoodangels.org) provides donation options.
Yard sales have been a significant aspect of fund-raising for the Angels, bringing in much needed funds over the years. This year our yard sale is open the first week-end of July through July 4th, with hundreds of donated items for sale at 472 Walker Avenue throughout the day, from 9 am through dusk. We invite everyone to stop by and support this grass roots project with their purchases. There is an abundance of artwork, kitchen and household items, books, clothing, toys and games, collectibles, bedding, and electric gadgets, as well as furniture, fabric, and fun items galore.