Send your letters (please keep 200 words or less) or guest commentaries (600 words or less) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All letters must be signed with your first and last name and your city/state. We do not accept unsigned letters or commentaries.
In reference to your recently-published Community Assessment Survey of local LGBTQ non-profits (Dec. 5, 2014, goqnotes.com/33076/), I wanted to thank you for providing transparency to the Charlotte LGBTQ donor community on the financial security of the organizations we love and support. Not only does your report provide accountability to those running these organizations, but it also gives the organizations a clearer profile of the typical Charlotte LGBTQ and ally donor.
In support of your work and as Board Chair of Campus Pride, I would like to provide financial information related to Campus Pride and our local work from 2013. As one of the many national organizations and businesses that call Charlotte home (and one of the few LGBTQ national organizations based in the South), Campus Pride has a strong donor base in Charlotte who may also be interested in our local LGBTQ programs and services and how we are using donors’ money.
Campus Pride has experienced strong 21 percent growth since 2010, bringing in $402,889 in revenue in 2013, as stated on our 2013 Form 990. Expenses for the same period totaled $350,170. Our salaries for 2013 were $62,000, and our occupancy costs (which include both rent and administrative costs) were $31,372. Since Campus Pride is based in Charlotte, these salary and occupancy costs benefit our local economy. An additional $70,000 of our 2013 annual budget was directed to local Charlotte-based programs, resources and staff hours to benefit LGBTQ (and all) youth in the Charlotte area through direct service and outreach.
In addition to working with students at nine regional colleges — Davidson, UNC Charlotte, Central Piedmont, Queens, Johnson C. Smith, Johnson & Wales, Winthrop, Wingate and Rowan Cabarrus Community College — Campus Pride regularly hosts local events with local partners, such as the community forum titled “Beyond Marriage Equality” on Dec. 17 at the Levine Museum of the New South. For the last five years, we have held a college fair in Charlotte for LGBTQ youth to find inclusive campuses, scholarships and other prep services. Furthermore, we are expanding our week-long spring and winter “Alternative Breaks” program, in which we host in Charlotte nearly 20 students from Central Michigan University (and this year, an additional two groups of 20 from Clemson University and University of South Florida), providing these students service and engagement opportunities with our local Charlotte community partners. This past summer, Campus Pride employed four summer fellows and one intern in our Charlotte office. And in 2015, we will announce plans to host our nine-year-old signature program, Camp Pride, in our hometown of Charlotte.
Regarding our 2013 revenue, a majority (58 percent) directly comes from program revenues and the remainder from sponsorships, grants and individual donors. In fact, only 7.5 percent of our 2013 revenues came from local Charlotte organizations/grants and only 3.5 percent of revenues were from Charlotte individual donors. Campus Pride works every year to have a diverse revenue base reflecting grants and donors from different geographic regions as well as maintaining strength in our program revenues.
Despite Campus Pride not qualifying for your survey, I did want to offer transparency into our financial health for the Charlotte community and our local donors. Looking forward, Campus Pride is proud to continue to call Charlotte home and make significant investments locally to support LGBTQ youth and change lives. : :
— John M. Witherington, board chair, Campus Pride, Charlotte, N.C.