Editorial: All they ask
The people behind our associations do the work because they enjoy it, know it’s important and know it needs doing.
By Colleen Cross
This column was conceived while sitting in view of the lake at our cottage association’s annual meeting, amid a relaxing, warm June breeze.
It was inspired by those people who carry the brunt of the workload when it comes to organizations, volunteer or paid, how gracefully they do it and how easy they make it look.
Our little association is made up of half a dozen committees (committee = one person), all of whom play a part in keeping our somewhat remote enclave habitable, accessible, safe and pleasant.
A few of these folks stand out from the rest because they have worked so long to handle essential functions like road maintenance and non-potable water supply, and to make sure there is money for all this upkeep. They do these thankless jobs cheerfully, and go beyond what’s expected, for the good of the whole – their neighbours.
At the yearly meeting, the president corrals members, the secretary records what we discuss, the security committee reports on potential or real breaches, and we all contribute to potlucks on assigned dates. In this compartmentalized way, everything gets done, with minimal burden on each individual.
Our 70-year-old association is a miniature example of what happens in your provincial associations. Everyone pays their dues, comes to the meetings, and pitches in when needed on the bigger jobs and issues.
This is what should happen. While the industry is strong, with many contractors in it for the long term, membership and attendance at some association events is not what it once was – and not what it could be.
The good news is, there is a fix: membership. To keep these associations healthy and working for you, all you have to do is be a member. If you want to go further, attending the annual general meeting, taking training and enjoying social events planned for your benefit by organizers are three easy ways to get involved. Making time to do these simple things will help you stay up to date on new standards and legislation that may affect your business, get answers to your questions, find out what everyone else is charging per foot, and learn about the latest products.
It also will make you part of a unified voice to governments on issues relating to ground water. With ground water a resource of national importance, it is crucial this industry be at the table whenever it is discussed. Your newly forming Canadian National Ground Water Association is forming to help make that happen and to address other important shared issues.
Your newly elected board – Simon Masse, Jason Friesen, Chris Gerrits, Blaine Matuga, Mike Lamont, Bill Tuytel, Paul Conrad, Kevin Constable, Mario Beauregard, Israel Cormier, Dwayne Graff and Rick Cronin – will meet via conference call to talk about association objectives, and the first AGM will take place during the NGWA’s Groundwater Week in Las Vegas in December. The CNGWA will be open to both companies and individuals. I urge you to contact a board member and find out how to join. If you’re feeling moved to volunteer your time to help launch this much-needed association, contact organizer Craig Stainton at email@example.com.
The hard-working people behind our associations do the work because they enjoy it, because they know it’s important and, frankly, because it needs doing. Their motives are genuine. All they ask is that you take them up on the good things they offer.