Are you new to BWI and wondering what it’s all about? Or maybe you’ve been a part of the group for a while and want to know how you can help and reap the benefits for less than one cup of coffee a month?
BWI of Peoria is a chapter of Babywearing International that is operated by Volunteer Babywearing Educators. They are certified through the organization so you are guaranteed expert help when you come to a meeting. Yearly memberships are always available for $30/year and normally half of each membership goes back to BWI with the other half staying within our own chapter.
But for the month of June, the entire $30 membership, which breaks down to only $2.50/month, stays with the Peoria chapter. This is great for everyone involved as it allows more carriers to be added to the lending library, which means more of a selection to see what you really love. Even then, it’s always great to see what else is available, which is possible with a membership. After you’ve been to two events, you have the option to checkout any of the carriers until the next event (roughly two weeks). You can then check out a new carrier. In essence, you can continually have one of nearly 50 of the lending library’s carriers!
You may have a carrier, or 10, but still need/want something different for an event you have coming up. Going to the waterpark and want to use a water sling? Or maybe you have a wedding and want to keep your shy little one close in a silk sling that goes with your attire. It’s vacation time and maybe you’re heading to Disney and know your big preschooler won’t be able to walk the whole day and want to check out a sturdy tote. With a membership, you have access to all the carriers for all of life’s events.
So if you’ve been wondering about the group, have been contemplating a membership, or need to renew, now is the time! Feel free to contact a VBE at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to activate your membership. Memberships can also be purchased at the topic meeting on Saturday, June 15th.
I thought I’d take some time, telethon style, to talk about fundraising. We are a non-profit group. All of our meetings are free, all the help we offer is free. You can try on any of the thirty-something carriers in the library and get hands on help from our certified Educators at any meeting for no cost. Since all this awesomeness is available free, how, exactly do we get money?
First, let’s talk about what our money does and does not go towards. None of our funds ever go toward paying anyone involved with our group. 100% of our funds go to running the group. Our budget goes to lots of little incidental things, like our banner or name tag holders, to some important things like dues for our chapter and the domain name for our site and to carriers. Though many of our carriers have been donated, more have been purchased, generally at some sort of discount. Some vendors donate a carrier, but ask that we pay shipping. Our number one priority has been building our carrier library. We are pretty proud of it, especially for a less than one year old group, but there are a few things we have our eyes on. We would like to eventually have the funds to do larger outreach events, as well.
Part of any funds we raise goes to our parent organization, Babywearing International. These funds provide our group with liability insurance, brochures and the umbrella of a larger organization with a big name and a strong reputation, among other things.
Memberships to BWI are always available. For $30/year, you can become a member of our group, complete with the privilege to borrow carriers from our library. We also have some other great fundraisers going on now!
Between now and October 26th, you can make a purchase of fall flower bulbs through our Flower Power Fundraiser and have 50% of the proceeds go to our group! Your purchase is shipped right to you, so this is a way for people who don’t live in the Peoria area, but who maybe enjoy our blog and want to support the work we do, to help us out.
If you are in the Central IL area, you might like to buy a Peoria Dining Tour book. For $30, you get 330 coupons for 100 different restaurants and eateries, good through November 2013. These are terrific for families and make a great gift. My family loved them and we’ve found they pay for themselves in only a few dinners out. You can see a list of participating restaurants. You can pick up a book at any of our meetings through then end of the year.
Another great fundraiser for local types is the Monkey Joe’s event we have coming up! Tuesday, September 25th, from 2-5 pm, we’ll be hanging at Monkey Joe’s!
If you print off the flier (from the Facebook event) and show it to them at the door, we get a 40% of your admission! Babywearing can be a lifesaver at this place. We first took my son, then 3, when my daughter was only a few months old. Since I was wearing her, I was able to safely help my son climb into bouncers and catch him at the bottom of slides without worrying about dropping a tiny baby. We’ve been a number of times since and I’ve worn her each time.
Feel free to pop in and stay for as long as you please. Also, please share the link to the flier. Anyone can help our group raise funds during this event; they don’t have to come over and visit it they’d rather not.
We have one more pretty exciting fundraiser coming up as well, but I’ll save that for my post on International Babywearing Week events.