The Legacy of Mary Virginia Merrick…
“You have many duties. God has laid out before you duties enough to fill your life; be patient, govern with a hand hidden in the heart.”
Moira Lynch, our new Executive Director, the office staff, and the entire National Board are constantly thinking about ways we can support each and every chapter in their mission to help children and families in need in their local communities. We recognize that the amount you contribute to National in the form of dues and support may be a hard stretch for some chapters. You may even be wondering why we need a National organization.
If we take a moment to review the timeline shown on our National webpage, we will see that it was always Mary Virginia Merrick’s plan to have a National organization with chapters across the country. In 1894, the first headquarters was founded in Washington DC. In 1916 the branches of the Society become formally organized under the National Christ Child Society name. In 1927, the first convention was held. By 1932, the National organization had grown to 33 chapters across the country!
So why is it still important today to have a national presence? National Board members are first and foremost local chapter members. We have volunteered and donated to our chapters throughout the years We have seen what women and men on a mission can do. We have seen the faces and smiles of the children and families we serve! We don’t forget that when we take a position on the National Board. Instead we just become energized to help and support all our chapters in their local outreach.
Soon after I became President of the board, we set two major goals for the 2018-2020 term:
- Develop outside sources of support (donations) so that we do not have to rely solely on our members in terms of dues/support and the Annual Appeal. We are truly grateful to everyone throughout the years who have supported National and hope they continue to do so. However, we are sure that there are many foundations and organizations that would support us on a National level to further our local mission. To this end, Moira has been networking with other nonprofits and we have started to submit grant applications while researching foundations and possible large donations. A corporation grant we are currently seeking would help us to let the secret out… “Christ Child is in your local community and we need you”. We are also looking to identify grants that would provide books and layette items to our chapters. If you have any thoughts about what would help your chapter, please contact me!!!
- Our next major goal is Membership, a major goal for any nonprofit organization. We believe that by publicizing National and all our chapters, we can not only attract new members, but new partners and donations may follow. If we show the power of a National presence, with local emphasis and focus, we can inspire others to join us. We may even be able to identify other needs in our local communities as others learn more about us!
Of course, the best thing about being part of a national organization is the ability to share resources as well as program and fundraising ideas. We have so many wonderful and creative members! What better way to share, than to come to our annual conference/convention. The board and office work very hard to provide inspiring presentations as well as educational seminars. And members love chatting with members from other chapters. If you haven’t already got your registration in, please do so. I promise, you will enjoy the experience!
On a side note, please remember to get your orders in for our Read to Me and Calm Your Baby cards. Contact the National office to place your order.
So, I hope you all see the value of being part of a National organization knowing we are all a part of Mary Virginia Merrick’s vision. We at the National level hope to be good stewards of that vision and advance the mission that we all hold so dear.
We are here for you and you should feel free to contact the office or myself, whenever you have a question or need help in any way.
Blessing to you all,
NCCS President (626) 485-8101