Friday, December 19th, 2014
Métis Partner Community Leaders
Re: BC Métis Federation Financial Update – Action Plan
BC Métis Federation Members and Partner Communities;
The BC Métis Federation leadership has continued to address a variety of issues. Some of the recent internal challenges arose from inquires about the overall finances of the BC Métis Federation.
Since 2011 BC Métis Federation has relied upon the finanical dependence of personal and volunteer contributions from a number of individuals to create and build the organization. As a founding member I have provided significant bridge financing through personal financial contributions as well via my company KCD Consulting Incorporated. The goal and hope was to invest in order to establish the main office, staffing/contractor support, cultural and community investments, online website/social media platforms, etc. This has been accomplished and is a direct result in raising our organizational profile and strenghtened our operational abilities to grow as a provincial Métis representative organization. As openly shared with the past and current board of directors, as well as last week during Métis Coffee Talk with our Métis membership, I outlined the specifics around this investment which is approximately $233,000.00 to date.
In the current fiscal year (April 1st, 2014-March 31st, 2015) BC Métis Federation has continued to grow and secured a number of new agreements which greatly reduces pressures on the need to provide any cash management or additional investments to stabilize operations. This in essense strengthens the BC Métis Federation and the leadership are focused on continued growth for our Métis people.
The issue has become whether or not the approximate $233,000.00 in bridge financing will be repaid to myself/KCD Consulting Incorporated given the past years of previous BC Métis Federation statements. The past board held discussions and there was general consensus that money would be repaid if possible. Unfortunately as a growing organization, neither our past board nor myself clarified the situation at the time as our focus was on moving forward at that date and time. In hindsight this should have been addressed with greater clarity and details. Regardless, all receipts and records are in tact to demonstrate how the contributed finances went into building the organization and are available for the upcoming audit and membership review. The board and myself are confident and committed to ensuring the members and partner communities that this missed opportunity in process, which is now being rectified via our governance model, is being rectified on a priority basis to ensure that no ill willed intent will harm the BC Métis Federation, our members, or partners in any manner.
Since October 2014 a few of our recently elected board members became very aggressive to clarify the situation. Their internal actions did not follow stated governance processes, open conversations or transparency, which resulted in negligence in performing due diligence. I can assure the members that there was a number of internal conversations and efforts to offer rationale and resonable solutions and discussions. The leadership efforts led to the following motion approved unanimously on November 22nd, 2014:
Motion 2014-11/22/06 – In recognition of the significant donation of KCD over the past four years, the Board of Directors agree to revoke the donation and re-term it as an interest free loan, repayable to KCD Consulting Incorporated over a term of five years, subject to available funding.
However this past weekend when the Executive Committee and board members met, I requested an amendment to this motion. The motion suggests KCD Consulting Incorporated/myself will be fully repaid for all bridge financing and investments. However at no point did I ever expect to be fully repaid. I always expected to invest time and funding. Therefore we are working on a revised financial action plan to demonstrate a forgivable loan and repayment terms affordable and addressed this fiscal year between KCD Consulting Incorporated/Keith Henry and BC Métis Federation. While the plan is still to be finalized by the board in February as outlined herein, the repayment amount has been tentatively agreed at $75,000.00. Therefore I have agreed to provide a forgivable loan of approximately $158,000.00 of actual cash that was invested between 2011-2014 to support the BC Métis Federation.
Our BC Métis Federation Treasurer, Vice President and staff met with our approved auditing firm, Culver and Co. and their Managing Partner Lyle Brown, and part of our plan going forward will be to:
- Loan agreement drawn up and ratified by both parties
- Resolution/Motion by the Board approving loan agreement
- Written confirmation at year end to confirm amount and terms of loan
In closing our board has also agreed, and is very excited, to take on a number of additional fundraising initiatives to demonstrate other solutions:
- Request and call to action to members for donations. The notion is to raise support from our members and every small or large donation is appreciated. You can donate easily and for details of how to donate go to: http://bcmetis.com/donate/
- Online or
- At a local Scotia Bank
- Members will be requested to volunteer time to promote a BC Métis Federation hosted February fundraising gala that will feature Métis music and fun.
- A few partner communities have already committed to assisting fundraising ideas to support their participation and are already organizing and planning events.
Going forward our board remains united and we know that BC Métis Federation has built a strong organization that is open and transparent. The investment/bridge financiing provided by KCD Consulting Incorporated/myself and all financial reporting is available for any member to review at the BC Métis Federation office.
Our focus now is to complete the agreement and terms for ratification in February at our next board meeting. As described we are now taking additional steps to support the resolution and encourage members to donate directly to the BC Métis Federation, support community fundraising events, and attend the future BC Métis Federation fundraising gala in February. Our objective is to address the $75,000.00 briding financing and ensure maximum funding for consultation and current programs. We believe our members care and can contribute to a worthy cause as many of us have during the challenging years of rebuilding a Métis democratic representative organization.
Thank you everyone for the continued support. I am a proud contributor to the BC Métis Federation both in terms of funds and volunteer time. The growth and recognition of the BC Métis Federation is undeniable and I can assure members and partner communities that you have our leadership’s commitment to move forward in a positive way providing solutions for the betterment of the organization.
I believe each of us can be part of the solution in a positive way one small step at a time. I look forward to concluding this issue and thank you for the strong support. Lets show how our community can rally to address issues when they arise as a true self sustainable organization owned by no one but ourselves. This is a key value we have asserted from the day we formed in June 2011.
Have a wonderful holiday season.
cc BCMF Board Members
[ilink url=”http://bcmetis.com/wp-content/uploads/BCMF-Letter-to-Members-December-19th-2014-Financial-Action-Plan.pdf” style=”download”]Click here to download this statement as a PDF[/ilink]