One of the largest Larp associations in Belgium is having trouble.
Yesterday was the General Meeting of Oneiros vzw, the Larp association where I organise Manticore. While some good came out of this meeting (e.g. the ellection of two new board members who are, in my view, more capable than some others in the General Board) I left the meeting with mixed feelings.
On one hand do I have a good hope in getting out of the downwards fall that Oneiros has been into since more than a year, but on the other hand some decisions were made that, in my opinion, continues with that downwards fall.
But the current president of Oneiros gets my approval and I'll see what happens on the 24th of September when the new General Meeting will take place, I just hope that it'll show signs of a new upwards direction and break with the current strategy that has been in place for years.
One thing I hope for is that the mandatory membership will be removed as I believe that has been one of the worst decesions ever made (and the main reason why I left the board last year)
Perhaps it is better to try to work on the good points instead of keep hammering on the things that were decided without you approve.
Sometimes one cannot have what one wants and should have peace with that.
What do you prefer... keep hammering on decissions you did not like and therfor giving more negativity to the club of people who ALL want to have a healthy organisation. They all do this withouth personal benefit and do what they think is best for Oneiros.
I am hearing rumors of people trying to manipulate the things around them... I detest that.
Hey, I'm not saying that I want to get all things my way huh :-)
I'm just saying that my perception is that the mandatory membership is a bad thing. I've had participants (PCs and NPCs) say to me that they will no longer come just because of that. And that are just the ones who've told me. How many participants have we lost without knowing it due to this?
Of course I also want Oneiros to be healthy, else I would've left many months ago. And of course everybody wants Oneiros to be healthy again, but that doesn't mean that others may not question the decisions they make.
I believe that one should be able to question what others decide.
Now if people decide that my questions and/or advice are not needed then I will take the hint. But I'll see what the future brings. My goal has always been to make Oneiros a good and financial healthy association and that's still what I want to reach (unless people no longer want my help of course).
Other groups use the same system of mandatory membership. The real discussion is what do you/I get for the extra 10 euro?
Insurrance during the LARP events when something bad happens? A free sticker and glass? Or nothing.
The thing is, locations cost more, stuff is getting more and more expensive and money needs to come from somewhere.
And, an other problem was that Oneiros didn't have enough real members and as such couldn't always have the funding others vzw's have. Since now everyone becomes a member, you have the much needed numbers in membership and maybe, if someone takes the time and makes the effort, Oneiros could get some money from the government.
Well what people were told was that the mandatory membership would help Oneiros get financial help from the state. For the rest nothing extra was promised (i.e. no insurance was promised, no sticker, ...).
Here's a link to the text about the mandatory membership (dutch only).
Now I understand that things are getting more and more expensive, but I believe that raising the participation fee or making membership mandatory does not always solve the problem.
There should be a study as to why there is less money and solve that!
My believe is that our larps also become more expensive because we have less participants (check the Oneiros subscription archive to see the number of participants we had 5 years ago).
So raising the price and having mandatory membership can result in even less participants => even less money to pay for everything.
As said, the current president has my approval and we'll see how he can get us out of the bad situation. I'll keep pestering him with my advice :-)
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