The Lodge Year is rapidly coming to a close and will end on March 31st. Lodges are encouraged to use these next few weeks to make a difference in membership by contacting those members who have not yet renewed their dues and initiating candidates who have been elected to membership but are awaiting initiation.
As of March 9, 2023, the Association shows a gain of 722 members for the year. However, there are still 523 members who have not yet paid their dues for the year. While it looks like the Association will have a gain in membership this year, we should take this time to reach out to these members and make personal contact with them to encourage them to remain on as active members. Sending out dues notices as part of a Lodge bulletin often gets ignored, and while direct billing may get some results, the best way to find out why a member has not paid their dues is to contact them by phone.
Over the next three weeks, Exalted Rulers are encouraged to get a group of members or even the officers together to reach out to these members to let them know that they are still part of the Lodge, and that we still need them to remain active. If it is discovered that there are financial or medical issues, then perhaps the Lodge can do something to help. If we don’t reach out to them, we may lose them as members because they will be dropped for non-payment of dues on March 31st. It would be a shame if a member was dropped, and we could have done something about it.
In addition, we currently have 156 candidates awaiting initiation. Exalted Rulers are encouraged to schedule at least one more initiation before the end of the year. Remember, an initiation can be a special event, or it can be held at any Lodge meeting. Candidates who are waiting a long time to officially become members may eventually lose interest, and not join the Lodge. It would be a shame to lose those potential new members because we didn’t initiate them in a timely manner. Don’t Wait…Initiate!
Not to be forgotten, but we also have many past members who have been dropped over the years. Exalted Rulers are encouraged to have their Lodge Fraternal Committee’s membership subcommittee focused on reaching out to these past members to encourage them to rejoin. Let them know about all the great things that are happening at your Lodge. You may be surprised to see many return because we showed that as Elks we actually cared enough to contact them.
Let’s do what we can to make a difference in membership by reaching out to members who have not yet paid their dues for this past year, initiate those waiting to join, and to contact those members who have been dropped to encourage them to rejoin the herd.
Here are some useful links to help:
Sample Reinstatement Letter from the Grand Exalted Ruler