As you may or may not know, the First United Methodist Church (FUMC) has graciously hosted the Enrichment of Life Movement (ELM) for 38 years. Last year with the pandemic, FUMC requested we stop holding in person classes, which put the future of ELM in question. ELM is a Not-for-profit organization that relies heavily on registration fees and donations to continue its operations. We do have payroll and other operating expenses that did not just disappear when in-person classes were halted.
Fortunately, the advisory boards (past and present) have been good stewards of ELM’s finances and had created reserves that allow ELM to continue thru this troubling time. Additionally, we have applied for and received funds from the various PPP programs that were made available, but just as importantly, donations have continued to come in from our student community. Lastly, several our business sponsors have continued their support.
From an operating expense standpoint, we did everything in our power to protect ELM. This included asking our employees to make sacrifices in taking a pay-cut, which they did without complaint.
ELM, thru this extraordinary period had to re-imagine itself. We implemented “Zoom” or “online” classes for our students. While the attendance registration revenues we receive from these classes are significantly lower, it helped ease the burden on our reserves.
Our hope is to get back to “in-person” classes soon. Right now, we do not have a timetable for this and are abiding by FUMC’s safety protocols.
I wanted to personally thank those who have supported ELM with their registrations, donations and sponsorships. I also wanted to thank our employees for their sacrifices.
ELM will survive this pandemic!
John Picardi, ELM Board of Advisors Chairman