Hello to all the members of QSW&FA Group.
Some of you may not be aware that at the beginning of this month an Extraordinary General Meeting was held at Fibrecraft House. Please go to the EGM page for more details. The purpose was to inform members, so that a vote can be taken at the upcoming Annual General Meeting on Saturday 3rd of September on the long-term direction of the group.
The presentation (there’s a copy on the EGM page) was the culmination of over six months of research. This included reviewing almost 50 years of board minutes and Clippings, as well as gathering and analysing over 10 years of financial and membership data, and the results of the membership survey undertaken in June.
The result of this has led to an honest look at ourselves. There are fundamental challenges facing the group. Our financial and membership numbers are steadily in decline and the day to day overhead of managing the group, with fewer and fewer people, is unsustainable.
This is not a Board issue, this is something that will effect every craft group and member. The decision we have to make is this…
Do we downsize our offerings and minimise the overheads and make provisions to eventually close down?
Or do we go back to our original purpose, communicating, engaging and operating in a new way, to reach new and different audiences and a new generation to ensure the group can continue on for anther 50 years?
If we decide as a group the we want the latter option, we will need to work together over the next 3 years to turn our position around. That will mean change. And not everyone is comfortable with change. “One reason people don’t like change is because they focus on what they have to give up instead of what they have to gain.” There is much to be gained from reaching out to new people in new ways.
We are not changing the fundamental purpose of our commitment to fibre art. If anything, we would be keeping true to the original aims of the group as it was formed in 1969:
- To promote a knowledge of and interest in spinning, weaving and dyeing in the state.
- To share one’s skills with others.
- To create a friendly, caring atmosphere
What has to change is the way we do these things and ensure we remain relevant, not just for ourselves, but for anybody who has an interest in fibre arts.
Spinning and weaving are traditions that have been passed down for over 2000 years. Cecile, our founder, had a dream – she was brave enough to act on it and share it with others. To ensure that the tradition, as well as the craftsmanship and the art would continue. That dream has become our dream and our passion and the responsibility of all of us, regardless of what craft we pursue, to emerging generations and beyond.
The other option on the table, to continue as we are, would mean each of us going our own separate way and saying goodbye to the incredible history and accomplishments of the last 47 years.
Please take the time to make your voice heard and vote on Resolution 4 at the Annual General Meeting.