It has never been more clear to me how important it is to preserve and protect this wonderful province we call home. Throughout the highs and lows of 2011, we consistently pushed hard to deliver our GreenVision, providing solutions to address the major issues of our time – climate change, declining resources and rising energy prices and the disappearance of good, local jobs.
As we head into a new year, we are confronted with the uncertainty of a minority parliament. I have little doubt that the legacy parties will continue to avoid, duck and dawdle, punting problems to future generations. The issues facing us today will still be here when we make our next trip to the polls, and I am committed to working with you to grow the Green political movement.
We need to prepare for a possible election as early as 18 months from now. More, now than ever, we need your advice on how to move our party forward, and your financial support to replenish our campaign fund, maintain operations and strengthen our party from the ground up.
While the results of the recent provincial election were not what we hoped for, we know that there is a much larger issue at play. With less than half of the 8.5 million voters bothering to cast their ballot, our province is facing a democratic deficit that must be addressed.
We know that our Green Vision is what Ontario urgently needs to build a sustainable future for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren. We also know that many support this vision, with our membership more than doubling during the past twelve months to 3,300 members, and a record number of volunteers willing to roll up their sleeves and help promote our Green vision.
We need to take our policies, and package them in a way that will captivate our fellow Ontarians and provide a reason to vote once again. It’s essential for us take our vision to the next level, and inspire our friends, neighbours and loved ones.
To do this, we need your help. Please take a few moments to fill out our questionnaire included with this letter, or to offer us your thoughts on the way forward online at www.gpo.ca/campaign-2011-survey.
Facing two elections six months apart (one federal and one provincial) is challenging to a young political movement such as ours. Your support throughout the year is a true testimony to the resiliency of our party, and I truly appreciate your loyalty.
Knowing first-hand the extraordinary efforts and sacrifices so many of you made this year, I know that we ask a lot of you to make a final 2011 donation.
20% of our funding comes at the end of the year. And, because of the minority parliament, we need to prepare immediately for the next election, keep our elbows up and maintain our profile. We cannot afford to let our guard down for a moment, and need your financial support today.
As a special thank you for rising to this challenge, everyone who makes a financial contribution at least $100 before January 1st (or a monthly donation of at least $10) will receive a special Green Party gift. Your choice: a GPO cap, t-shirt, corn mug, or the 2012 Green Party calendar.
Monthly donations are critical to building our party, providing a stable base for us to plan operations, maintain an office and staff. They also allow us to execute exciting plans for next year that are already in the works – engaging members, supporters and new contacts in a policy development project that will drive our key messages for the next election and a community engagement process to put our ideas into action now.
I am asking that you join with me and many other sustaining members by starting a monthly donation of $50, $20, $10, or whatever you can afford.
Don’t forget that political contributions are eligible for generous tax refunds of up to 75% of your donation! For example, a monthly donation of $50 starting today will cost only $12.50 over the rest of this year after the maximum $37.50 refund on your 2011 taxes (annual cost would be $207 after tax credit of $393). A full tax credit chart can be found online at www.gpo.ca/donate.
We truly value any amount you can give. To show our gratitude, we will send a special GPO fridge magnet with your February tax receipt for any final 2011 financial contribution.
You will find a donation form included with this letter to complete and return. You can also donate online at www.gpo.ca/donate or over the phone at 888-647-3366.
Together, we will take our party to the next level in 2012. Thank you again for your continued financial support, and for your critical feedback.
Green Party of Ontario
P.S. As we enter into a new year, please know how much your continued support means to me and our party! Together, we will continue to make a positive difference!