Where are we now?
We have made good strides in a short amount of time but we have heavy lifting still to do! Regarding our initial 3 financial milestones:
Foreclosure Prevention: We have negotiated a runway of time that prevents any foreclosure proceeding and allows us an opportunity to execute on our recruitment strategies as long as we are able to make all of our monthly payments. As we have raised nearly $45k, this gives us the next few months to ramp up our fundraising strategies.
Business Plan Execution Runway: As stated, our monthly costs total approximately $10k. In order to get us to September of 2021 when we plan to have 20 members moving in to the house, we will need to raise approximately 15 months worth of bill payments, or $150k. That is what we are focused on right now. We do have 4 new members ready to move in this August and we are looking for more. If you know of anyone who has a son planning to attend the UofM, please let us know.
Debt Restructure & House Improvements: We are continuing to discuss the need to replace the Second Mortgage with a more manageable interest rate, while also planning on the longer term fund raising campaign to eventually be able to pay off that debt completely. The house is in pretty good condition right now with the exception of some minor touch up items and can be safely lived in today. We will continue to work to raise funds necessary to spit shine the inside and outside to its original luster and glory, but we can relaunch our chapter there as it sits today.
With a brand new Board of Directors, Montana Beta Chapter of SAE is bringing fresh ideas and energy to all aspects of chapter operations to better ensure long term success. From recruiting, to communications, to our physical house at 1120 Gerald Avenue, to fund raising, we are working to modernize our processes and overall message to be better in line with the 21st century and the current young men of "Generation Z"! The below illustrates where the generations fall:
We have new committees for Recruitment, Website & Social Media, Alumni Relations, Structural House, and Fund Raising. If you have interest or experience in any of these areas we would welcome your assistance!
We are currently seeking donations as part of our 3 year fundraising plan. The ask per alumni is minimal, but we have strength in numbers and with 300 participants we will achieve our goals! To learn more about The Plan, please click in the box below.
More About The Plan
As most of you are aware, we have recently embarked on an initiative to revitalize the Montana Beta Chapter while also saving 1120 Gerald from falling into foreclosure. Since March '20 we have been able to provide relief to the previous board and vote in all new members with fresh energy, ideas, and expertise. We have also established 5 new committees who will be focusing energy on improving the areas of Recruitment, Website & Social Media, Alumni Relations, Structural House, and Fund Raising.
We are re-opening the house and have secured the commitment of at least 4 new members to move in for Fall Semester of '20/'21 school year. We are working to increase that number to please think about anyone you know who could introduce us to incoming Freshman or students who are already attending The UofM.
In a short amount of time we have launched an email campaign, a postcard mailer campaign, and a webinar campaign, all designed to get the word out to our alumni base (over 800) of where the house is today, what is our plan to save The Chapter and The House, and what we are asking of ALL alumni for our fund raising initiative. Very soon, we will be standing up a brand new website architected specifically for social groups such as ours that includes mass messaging capabilities, fund raising tools, and tie-ins to other social media engines like Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, and more. We will continue to post updates to that website, as well as our 2 currently running Facebook pages, "SAE Montana Beta Alumni", and "Friends Who Like SAE - Montana Beta" including more webinar dates, fund raising updates, Board and Committee communications, and more.
Regarding fund raising, we have made great strides in a very short amount of time but there is heavy-lifting yet to do and we need your help! Our plan for the masses consists of requesting a small monthly donation per alumni over the course of 36 months. We have traditionally only seen about 7% of our alumni make donations and we are looking to increase that to at least 50%! The best way to succeed in that audacious goal is to lower the monthly amount we are requesting, which is between $25-$50. If we can get 300 alumni to donate an average of $35/mo for 36 months we will succeed!
There are two big goals behind this fundraising initiative:
- We need to pay our monthly bills between now and September 2021, which is the date we believe our strategies will ensure at least 20 members moving into the house for the '21/'22 school year. Those 20 members will pay all of the operational debt on the house fully loaded, excluding maintenance and repairs.
- We will be able to pay off our Second Mortgage (high interest rate of 10%), potentially restructure our First Mortgage, and greatly reduce that monthly operational cost of The Chapter. In this scenario, we would likely only need about 15 live-in members to pay for those expenses.
- Financial "stretch goals" include some improvements on the house and property to help make our Chapter even more attractive as we compete for Gen-Z'rs, further long term debt restructuring, and recruitment and scholarship budgets for some great strategies.
To learn, more please contact Brother Jeff Savage at [email protected].
We have made donating simple! Please visit our donation page.
Once there you are able to enter any denomination you wish, and then by clicking on the box in front of "Make this donation every.." you are able to use the drop down box to choose from a Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, or Yearly interval. For example, you could enter $35.00 in the denomination box, and then check the box and choose to make that payment every month. You will be asked to enter your credit or debit card info, and that amount will automatically be ran every month and you don't have to remember to go make that payment. You are able to change or stop that payment at any time. As always, you can also mail in a check to the same PO Box we have had in Missoula for years by checking the "Offline Donation" option under Select Payment Method.
The key to our success will be in our ability to actually reach all of our alumni. That has continued to be a challenge and we will be working hard to update the contact info for all of our brothers and we need your help on that as well. Please watch for a link to our database of alumni that you will be able to review to see who we are missing contact information for and review for overall accuracy.
Remember, our power is in our numbers. The idea is that you will commit to a monthly number that you are comfortable with no matter how small. Some brothers will pledge higher monthly amounts than others but if we can average $35/mo we win. Obviously, you can always send in a one time donation to cover a 1, 2, or 3 year pledge as many have already done. We have already been able to raise almost $45k toward our long term goal of $380k.
Let's keep Montana Beta going and provide those leadership skills and friendships that we all benefited from to young men at The University of Montana for generations to come!