By now you’ve probably heard that MacKenzie Bezos has pledged to give away half her fortune to charity. Anyone have her phone number? WiVLA could put some of that $36 billion to good use for our members!

Not that we haven’t done pretty well over the last 25 years. I’m always proud to point out that WiVLA has given $42,000 to individual artists and writers in honor of 20 years of ECO Fund Grants. Think also of the countless creatives and art professionals we have paid honoraria to in exchange for their inspiring presentations at our monthly meetings. Add in the scholastic scholarships we’ve awarded and you have quite a sum of giving and supporting the arts in all its iterations.

As a WiVLA member, I never thought about the source of this money except maybe thinking of membership dues. Once I was fortunate enough to join the Board, I began to see just how much we were doing with how little. WiVLA currently has no corporate sponsors, active grants, or wealthy, generous benefactors. Just us! the members!

So, as we celebrate our 25th year, let’s think how we can get more to do more for our creative community going forward. Three ways to get started are:

1. Membership! Renew if you have not, and please don’t be shy about inviting friends to our monthly meetings. This is the most organic way to increase our reach. We all know artistic women who don’t think they are ‘professional’ or ‘good enough’ for WiVLA. What?! We
welcome all creative women

2. Easy passive giving by shopping. Be sure to add WiVLA’s Amazon Smile to your online amazon.com account. At Randall’s, stop by the courtesy booth and have them link your Randall’s card to WiVLA’s number. When we host a Cultured Cocktails event through FreshArts at Boheme Cafe or other happy-hour fundraiser, come join the fun!

3. Seek out big money. Does anyone work for a company that has matching gift program or that can sponsor a WiVLA event by donating money or goods-in-kind? How about women-owned businesses that would like to partner with us? Our treasurer is ready to send you, and anyone who gives, a form for your tax-deductible donation!

WiVLA has so many ideas for the next 25 years! We can ensure our place in Houston’s artistic community by thinking now how we can further finance our dreams. I welcome your ideas and comments. And MacKenzie’s cell number if you’ve got it!

Lee Steiner

"An ekphrastic poem is like a jolt of electricity surging through a work of art."
- Patricia Smith, ARTLines2

GoodSearch: You Search...We Give!