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MartyT

A Report To Our Members And Visitors

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Dear Ones,

Since our beginnings eleven years ago, our Grief Healing Discussion Groups site has been advertisement-free and open to everyone, members and visitors alike, at no cost, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, offering the information, comfort and support we believe you need and deserve as you each find your way through your individual grief journeys. Visitors are welcome to browse, and registered members are free to use all the features of the site.

Unlike other self-help forums for the bereaved, our site is privately administered, closely monitored and professionally moderated to ensure the highest level of quality, safety and security for our participants. Every post is reviewed and read by our moderators: two nationally certified grief counselors who visit the site several times a day, and who feel a deep personal and professional responsibility to monitor our site in a way that encourages understanding, growth and healing.

Our site has been described by the caregivers and bereaved who come here as a lifeline ~ a safe place to land when you need to be with others who “get it” and who understand. We know from your unsolicited comments and continued active participation that this is an important and valued service.

Still, it costs money to sustain and many hours a month to administer and moderate the site. Having lost our hospice sponsorship last October, we were left to find some way to continue the service on our own.

In an effort to cover expenses, in October of 2013 we added a Donate button to our pages, giving everyone an opportunity to donate toward its ongoing support. We suggested that members and visitors contribute as much (or as little) as they could afford, and as often (or as seldom) as they chose, either all at once or over an extended period of time (that is, a recurring amount automatically deducted from a credit card each month).

Now that we’ve had a year’s experience with that plan, this seems a reasonable time to report to you where we stand.

While the annual cost to keep our site going exceeds several thousand dollars, our donations over this past year reached a total of $4200. We are deeply grateful to our regular donors and to all those who have contributed this past year, but we note with some concern that it is the same half-dozen people who are giving. Some members have donated far more than their fair share, and they’ve done so more than once. One member’s donations account for roughly an entire one-third of the total amount.

Grateful as we are, we hope you will agree that it’s not fair that so few of our members have been carrying the weight for so many, who clearly have derived some benefit from our service.

As the holidays draw near, we are asking for your help. If you donated at the beginning of our campaign last October, would you consider doing so again? And if you’ve never done so, would you consider making a contribution of $20 or more? You can rest assured that your gift will be used to directly fund this service and keep it going.

As we enter the new year, we plan to re-visit this matter of donations and other methods of funding, and will keep all of you informed of our ideas and our findings.

Meanwhile, any thoughts or ideas you wish to share are welcomed and appreciated.

With heartfelt gratitude,
Marty Tousley

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