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Author Topic: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey  (Read 3970 times)

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Offline Grants Committee

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AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« on: October 02, 2007, 08:01:32 AM »
Dear Everyone:

Please take a moment to complete an AMG Grants Committee Survey.  The results will help shape the future role of the Grants Committee.  We would like to hear from you irrespective of whether or not you attended the AMG and/or participated in the Grants Committee.  We will try to keep this survey open for at least a couple of weeks.  To those who are not familiar with the Grants Committee, this link provides a description and this link provides a summary of this year's account activity.  Thank you.

Take the AMG Grants Committee Survey

Grants Committee 07

Offline mjmel

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2007, 05:19:34 PM »
Fix the currency converter link.
xxx,
Mike

Offline Grants Committee

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2007, 05:40:22 PM »
Thanks Mike.  It's done.

Offline Grants Committee

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2007, 01:50:42 PM »
Thanks to the 18 people who have responded so far.  Please pardon the redundancy in some of the questions/responses.  We are hoping to get additional responses, including those who have not attended an AMG and irrespective of whether or not the responder is planning to donate.  The last question asks for narrative comments and suggestions and those, good or bad, would be very helpful as well, even if the other items are not answered.  Thank you for your participation.

Offline Ann

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2007, 03:28:52 PM »
Could you add an option (such as "unsure") to question number three, please? :)

Ann
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Offline Grants Committee

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2007, 07:55:13 PM »
Thanks for the feedback, Ann.  And thanks for putting this temporarily on "sticky." Unfortunately, there are several questions like the one you pointed out which needed to be polished on second thought.  That's what happens when I try to think of survey questions at 3 in the morning.  However, the site warns that if the options are altered (added/deleted), it would mess up the summary report.  I am able to look at individual responses so I will tailor the report after the survey closes to incorporate the responder's intent.  I would suggest that if unsure or the options are not complete, to leave the question unanswered and put a clarification on the last question on "comments/suggestions" that allows a narrative.  This is just a preliminary tool which I hope would encourage dialogue regarding the role, responsibility and direction of future GCs.

Gerry

Offline gerry

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2007, 05:13:02 PM »
Here are the survey results:

25 people responded to the current survey.

21 have attended at least one AMG, including mini-gatherings.  17 attended the San Francisco AMG.  5 had not attended any of the major AMGs (Toronto, Montreal, San Francisco) and 4 are planning to attend an AMG in 2008.

10 had donated to the GC in the past.  3 had received assistance from the GC (including 1 who had also previously donated to the GC). 

18 are planning to donate to the GC for 2008.  9 have never donated funds nor received assistance from the GC in the past.  4 have never attended a major AMG.  16 are planning to donate in US $.  7 of 10 prior donors plan on donating again in 2008.

5 had previously donated directly to another member not involving the GC (paid lodging, shared room, cash).  5 indicated that they are willing/going to donate directly to another member and 1 indicated that he/she will do it only if the GC did not exist.

21 (including 3 who have received assistance) rated the GC as being extremely important (5 on a scale of 1-5) to the success of AMG.  2 rated it 4 on a scale of 1-5.

23 thought the GC 07 provided sufficient transparency with its financial activities and grant awarding.  16 perceived that the GC 07 was fair in handling and awarding donated funds to recipients; 8 responders did not have an opinion regarding perception of fairness.


Comments and suggestions made:

I can't accurately ascertain the importance or the fairness. I CAN make some assumptions and my assumptions are that the committee is well run and vital. As to the running of it, I make assumptions on the basis of the calibre of the people whom I know are involved. And, most of them I know or know of through posts. All of this is good enough for me. I believe I have some instinctive sense left.

Make the "application" process a little more obvious. I have talked to several persons who received help and for the most part someone contacted them...some others were not sure how to go about "asking" for help.....It is a tremendous source of pride that people will donate to this cause and I feel that with a little more openness about "qualifying" even more people will donate.

I would like to see AMG held in a location that is the easiest to get the most numbers of members of attend. I am not against any place, but I just would like to find a place that gives the most number of members to participate, ie what are most members present and more economical (cheap) locations that are more affordable to the majority. I believe it is easier to raise money to get our friends from Europe, Asia and Australia to the US or Canada than the other way around. Again, anyplace works for me, I just wanted to see everyone who wants to attend AMG next year to be able to.

Moving forward, I think the biggest challenge for the Grants Committee is to maintain connection to its original purpose. Helping individual members, who could not/would not be able to attend an AMG. Expanding beyond the same group of donors, helping the same group of members is going to be a challenge. I think this year's committee did a remarkable job in terms of maintaining donor confidence and in terms of moving that concept forward. What I am hoping is that this progress continues.

Perhaps starting a bit earlier in fund raising, if that's possible. People can contribute as they come into some money instead of trying to do it all at once.

I voted 5 (extremely important) because a lot of people would not have had the enriching experience without help.

If the 2007 GC members were willing to serve again in 2008, that would be wonderful.

Keep up the good work. It’s evident that some people really DO need your assistance!




Thanks to all those who participated.  Please feel free to post further comments in this thread.  Hopefully, this sparks some kind of dialogue regarding the future direction of the Grants Committee, including addressing certain items raised in the comments.

Gerry
« Last Edit: October 14, 2007, 11:19:57 AM by gerry »

Offline milker

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2007, 01:17:10 AM »
What I can say is that AMG is not just a meeting. It's much more than that. I'm not sure how to express my feelings, but meeting other members from every type of life, age, sexual orientation, newly diagnosed, LTS, on meds, not on meds, was a very important turn in my life with HIV. I look forward to AMG 2008.

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
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may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline gerry

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2007, 01:27:18 PM »
Milker,

Thanks for your response.  I think it is very apparent how the AMGs have touched participants' lives ever since it started a couple of years back.  The question in my mind is if people think that part of its success was made possible by the creation of a Grants Committee, how can that be sustained and improved on moving forward.  We are putting several thousands of dollars worth of pooled donations (assuming that it will amount to the same next year) into the GC's hands.  I've been involved with the GC the past 2 years and was very familiar with it even during the first year when I was not officially part of it.  I can imagine it creating some discomfort in the future to be responsible for distributing these funds and the only ground rules are what's been done the previous years, realizing that the committee will probably not be composed of the same people in the coming year(s). 

The following come to mind in terms of brainstorming the issues:

Fund-raising model - is it even a good model to start collecting funds (cash) before we know who are eventually going to ask for assistance?  Or is it better to just ask for pledges and later match these with those needing assistance?

Anonymity - keeping the donors and recipients anonymous has its advantages, the most obvious of which is it eliminates of at least minimizes awkward interactions once the gathering takes place.  However, it also limits the GCs transparency to the donors.  Are there better mechanisms out there, such as pooling donor(s) to a specific recipient such that the donors know who they are helping but not the other way around (it's like "adopting" a member), with the GC acting as intermediary to maintain donor anonymity, but not collecting the funds until the donor-recipient match is agreed upon?

Ground rules - if the mechanisms stay as they have been, what ground rules need to be observed in terms of awarding grants? 

Just some food for thought. 
« Last Edit: October 13, 2007, 01:32:53 PM by gerry »

Offline milker

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2007, 01:41:38 PM »
I would feel very awkward "adopting a member". I'd rather not know who benefits from what I give unless it's a direct help. Maybe it would be an option where the donor can be anonymous or not?

I'll have to think more about this!

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
jul 30 09: cd4 512 (29%) vl undetectable :D :D
may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline gerry

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2007, 02:36:08 PM »
Point taken.  If there are potential donors that feel this way about anonymity (in both directions), then the GC can still maintain its function of preserving those.  What would come as a result of this is the consequence that transparency will continue to be limited to talking in general terms without revealing specifics (e.g., we have a record number of people who were assisted but we cannot reveal exactly how many, etc).

This also does not necessarily affect the other issue of should the GC collect the money in advance or should it just collect pledges and ask for the donation later when there is already a recipient?  Case in point, we were budgeting to help several folks earlier this year who expressed the desire to attend and that's why we asked for more donations.  Several of these did not materialize at all and we were left with the potential of having unused donations pretty close to the gathering, which was something we had wanted to avoid.  Without going into specifics and with extra effort, it turned out ok in the end.

It might be easier to have a list first of people wanting to attend and needing assistance before asking for the funds.  The risk there is in spite of posts and announcements, very few people actually initiate contact with the GC to ask for assistance.  That's part of the reason why the GC had to actively initiate contact with several folks who were "nominated" to possibly need assistance.

Offline Dennis

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2007, 10:36:29 PM »
In my opinion, donations should be collectd in advance rather than accepting pledges and then matching with a recipient.  A pledge doesn't necessarily guarantee the pledger will be able to follow through when it comes time to pay up.  This may leave the Grants Committee scrambling for funds to cover the recipient of the proposed funds.  I honestly don't see a huge problem should the Grants Committee collect more funds in a given year than are necessarily dispursed as long as those funds are used towards future gatherings.  However, this would be at the discretion of the person making the donation.  Perhaps donation requests should be made for AMG in general rather than for a specific year. 

I know one concern in the past was the relatively short period of time between a final decision on location/dates and the actual event.  Many have to put in for their vacation request within the first quarter of the year.  Finalizing this information before the end of the year may draw more attendees in 2008, therefore causing a slight increase in requests for assistance.

Dennis

Point taken.  If there are potential donors that feel this way about anonymity (in both directions), then the GC can still maintain its function of preserving those.  What would come as a result of this is the consequence that transparency will continue to be limited to talking in general terms without revealing specifics (e.g., we have a record number of people who were assisted but we cannot reveal exactly how many, etc).

This also does not necessarily affect the other issue of should the GC collect the money in advance or should it just collect pledges and ask for the donation later when there is already a recipient?  Case in point, we were budgeting to help several folks earlier this year who expressed the desire to attend and that's why we asked for more donations.  Several of these did not materialize at all and we were left with the potential of having unused donations pretty close to the gathering, which was something we had wanted to avoid.  Without going into specifics and with extra effort, it turned out ok in the end.

It might be easier to have a list first of people wanting to attend and needing assistance before asking for the funds.  The risk there is in spite of posts and announcements, very few people actually initiate contact with the GC to ask for assistance.  That's part of the reason why the GC had to actively initiate contact with several folks who were "nominated" to possibly need assistance.

Offline David_CA

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Re: AMG Grants Committee 2007 Survey
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2007, 09:10:48 AM »
Overall, I think that the grants process works well as is, but I'm sure there are some ways to tweak it.  If a member wants to sponsor another member, anonymously or not, that's fine too.  As to 'advertising' grants, if $'s were matched to grantees this year, then I'd say it worked out well.  The AMG's are pretty well discussed... all positive for the most recent event.  I think those interested will probably have seen posts referencing the Grants Committee.  Members who join after this AMG, say next spring, won't have that benefit, but a 'sticky' could be placed in Off Topic "see the thread on AMG '08" with a link to a thread in 'AM Gatherings' that discusses how grants and donations work.  That would serve to obtain donations and let people know about the assistance available.  In fact, this thread will be good reading for those who hope to attend or donate in the future.

David
Black Friday 03-03-2006
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