Dear Greater Bragg Creek Community,
On behalf of the Board of Directors and staff from the Bragg Creek Centre, I would like to take this opportunity to share an update as I complete my term as Board President of the BCCA.
The past two years have brought totally unforeseeable challenges to the Community Association. The Covid pandemic has forced us into limited operations as a Community Centre for over 19 months now.
For a Centre that was struggling financially and relying on financial reserves to bridge our operating costs: losing our ability to host weddings and facility rentals, programs, and large fundraising events is a difficult situation to be in.
Our upcoming AGM will highlight how we have done financially in the past year as your elected Board representatives however I would like to highlight some of the important achievements we have been
able to implement.
Office 365 implementation. Our computer system was server-based within the centre and not accessible for remote, cloud-based access. Through grant funding, we have been able to upgrade to a Microsoft SharePoint system which enables more collaborative access to information and material by
staff and Board members. This system will allow future Board members continuity and access to information on programs, processes, and information vital to the running of the Centre.
Website update. Through very generous donations of labour and expertise by AdMaki Advertising and additional grant funding, we have updated our website to allow for better communication with our members and potential facility renters. This website looks much better, works much better and recently won an award for its design.
Security System. The same grant that paid for the Office 365 upgrade, allowed for the purchase and implementation of a surveillance system to protect the Centre from vandalism and theft.
Bylaws. The bylaw committee have spent a great deal of time researching and reviewing and rewriting the Centre Bylaws to best reflect the Associations’ needs at this time. Thank you to the committee and
former board members who assisted with the rewrite.
Facility Leases. We have leased space in the facility to a legal practice, a remote school, a music program and of course, our Community Church. These are ongoing leases that provide regular, predictable income for the Centre.
Satellite Library. The Marigold Satellite Library is up and running in the Centre. A long-term project that has taken some time to get going but it is installed and working! The Satellite Library provides our community with access to library books and materials from the Marigold System without having to drive to Cochrane or Millarville to access library materials. The formal ‘launch’ is October 28th, and we look forward to sharing the success in the library will all those previous BCCA Marigold and Library
supporters who have made it possible.
CoShare Workspace. The shared workspace is continuing to provide desk and internet space for folks who struggle with consistent internet at home. We are looking forward to this space continuing to offer a solution for many people who are still working or schooling remotely. We are off the repayment of the investment due to Covid – but we are about 75% of the repayment for the installation of the workspace cost.
Nature Camp. The nature camp programs have been a very successful win/win arrangement for the BCCA and ReDiscover Play. This year it generated over $18,000 in program revenue for the Centre. Melissa and her staff have run great day camps to keep the littles interested and active outdoors.
Summer Market. The BCCA launched and ran a very successful summer market with some days seeing over 800 visitors to the market. The Market ran for 14 Sundays and generated approximately $12,662.00 (less staff costs). We must thank the amazing volunteers who came out – some almost every Sunday- to help ensure that the vendors were set up (and maybe to eat poutine!). The market would not have been as successful without you committed volunteers and we thank you very much!
Community Garden. We launched a version 1.0 Community Garden. We had a core group of volunteers and participants who were able to successfully plant and nurture carrots, beets, lettuce, peas, kale,
garlic and dill just to name a few! Our community volunteers built over 18 Garden Beds from purchased and donated lumber, donated soils and pallets and donkey manure. The permanent garden site is roughly set out (Thank you to TKMS for your assistance), applications for fencing funding are underway and we hope to be able to launch the permanent garden in the spring of 2022.
Community Rink. Our very keen and committed rink committee has been hard at work planning for rink improvements and fundraising activities for the coming winter season. Repair work has been done on the rink boards and is in process for the rink fencing. New fundraising campaigns have begun, including a raffle and some scheduled events for winter. With the repairs underway, we hope that we will be able to rent the ice for events and bookings this winter as well as the Community use times.
Fundraising Campaign. This year we struck a formal fundraising committee that has been building a program to actively look for donations and sponsors for the Centre. We look forward to the ‘launch’ of the official campaign very soon. Our parking lot signage has been successful at generating some monies to go towards the Centre when people come to Bragg to ride bikes and wish to leave their vehicle in the Centre parking lot. While it is a pay what you want program, we have seen regular payments of varying amounts to add to our fundraising.
Capital Improvements. To address the Life Cycle planning, we now have an asset management process including annual capital budgeting to help in the planning and fundraising for Capital improvements at the Centre. We have a mechanism for tracking the expiration dates of all equipment and assets from urinals to batteries in the Centre.
Roof Repair. Through some keen investigation by our staff, we have determined that some of the ongoing roof leaks are due to hail damage of the Centre roof. We have received an inspection and have begun the roof repair under our insurance. The heating and ventilation systems will be replaced in Spring / Summer 2022.
While we have not been able to be as open to the Community for programs and events as we would like I think that the current staff and Board have shown adaptability, resilience and have maintained our mission and vision and our focus on revenue, funding options, operations, and the physical facility during these difficult months.
Thank you to the current and past Board members, staff, and many volunteers. The Centre would not be operating without your time and interest and efforts. Every little bit of your time goes toward ensuring this Community Centre continues to be cared for and an active and welcoming hub for use by the greater Bragg Creek Community. Our AGM is OCTOBER 27, 2021, and we encourage all of the Community to attend if you can.
A final comment as I finish up in my volunteer role…. Please see this message as a Call to Community to invest their time and money in keeping the Centre operating and in good condition for current and future Bragg Creek community members.
PLEASE don’t drive by without considering what you can do to keep the Centre functioning. You can do this by participating in activities, buying your membership, volunteer when asked and even when you aren’t. Buy a raffle ticket, come to an event, consider being a donor. This centre is a non- profit, but it has to make enough money to operate and not drain the reserves to ensure it will continue to serve as the meeting space for our current and future community members. Don’t neglect your community hub. I know for certain that this community would come together if the building were to flood or burn (again!). Please, do what you can to ensure it continues to be well cared for and financially viable while we have it. And finally, please be kind to all the volunteers. The Board of Directors, committee members, volunteers and the staff give of their personal time. So much effort seems to go into disagreeing or discounting work done by others – when the only thing that really matters is that people are donating their time that could be spent elsewhere – because they care for the
Centre and their community.
Please keep healthy and take care of yourselves and one another.