How can you afford to do this?

I'm lucky to have a very flexible job as a freelance landscape maintenance gardener. Have been doing that since 1980, MM since 1993. Financially and morally supportive parents and spouse have also been instrumental in the freedom to pursue this idea to the max. It's a priority. In some ways, now I can't afford not to do it!

I applied for a small amount of funding after 2 1/2 years to compensate me for the great deal of time I've been spending to make it spin. For 2 years $3000, half of what I asked, was afforded by the BC Ministry of Health Mental Health Consumer Initiatives funding. In 1998 the annual funding was increased to $6000. As of 2013 our annual budget is around 31K for 60+ events a year. I draw an annual 13K and the rest goes for film rights costs, filmmaker and guest travel and honorariums, some travel to film fests. I’m lucky too have great support to fund raise, write proposals, and help to keep the society working, maintaining our website, tech expenses, program and ad costs, phone bills, honorariums to key volunteers.

The problem is, the program has been constantly getting a whole lot more ambitious so it's still a labour of love. With some compensation for the time, I just don't feel so desperate when I start my gardening day 2 or 3 hours late because of MM details.

The concession is as affordable as possible and strictly a break-even situation, running out of my back pocket.

Cash donations that people afford as they come to events at events are collected and every few months deposited into the Movie Monday account. Larger donations are welcomed too. We have Charitable Society status, so I’m pleased to issue official tax receipts for amounts over $10.

Canada Council For the Arts provides almost half of our operating budget which allows us to bring lots of ‘Canadian content’ filmmakers and guests to present our own country’s best and often under-exposed stories. VIHA allows us to use this excellent facility for free as it is considered a health related activity, and provides a supportive yearly grant that is a backbone to our program. A couple of pharma companies provide modest unrestricted educational grants. Yo Video gives us free use of their video materials and we in turn have built a collection of our unique and eclectic “finds” so they can be seen more broadly and generate traffic for one of the few remaining and my favourite video store in town. See MM/Yo Collection.

I smile when people ask me if they can use the theatre for a fundraiser screening. My task is to put up good films, work all the angles to get people to come and fund raise other ways to afford to do it!