Policy on Usage Fees and Guidelines for Donations
In the settlement house tradition, the people using the building support the house by helping with its operations. Jane Addams, the most famous settlement house developer of the early twentieth century, thought it was important for a child to pay a nickel, for example, to receive a lesson in English. The point was not to overtax the learner, but for each person who receives a benefit from their use of the house to have an opportunity to give back, even if the amount is small. This system is called “ mutual aid.”
Good Neighbor House relies almost entirely on fees we collect for Private Events that use the house and donations of money, time, and materials for Public, Open Events that use the house.
Our day-to-day operating expenses are moderate because we depend on volunteers primarily. However, we do pay for utilities, internet, and supplies as well as other usual operational expenses of a non-profit. In addition, we are continually maintaining a 100-year-old house, with yard and garden.
Our fee for Private events is $25 per hour. Private events and parties are closed and include only the people you invite. Our space nicely accommodates celebrations such as birthdays, family reunions, showers, recitals, and quinces. Businesses and churches have used our space for retreats, committees, and board meetings. Please note the fee is for use of the space; it does not include set up, decorating, or clean-up and put away items you use (tables, chairs, kitchen utensils). If your event is more than 4 hours (including set up and clean up) please contact us for prices.
For Public, Open Events, groups may use the building on a donation basis. Events open to the community for community enrichment may be one-time events or regular weekly or monthly gatherings. We recognize that people using Good Neighbor have a wide variety of incomes and resources. If you are someone who can afford to give a little more, you will be helping sustain the work of Good Neighbor to serve those who can only afford to give a little.
For Private events, you can use Venmo, PayPal, cash, or check to pay the fee.
For Public, Open events / uses, consider any of the options below. Note that the event organizer may donate one sum (collected from individuals), encourage participants to donate individually, or both.
Place cash in an envelope (available by both entry doors) and label it with your group name. Leave the envelope in the basket located at either entry door.
Checks may be made out to “Good Neighbor House Waco.” You may leave them in the basket or mail them to Good Neighbor House Waco, 2301 Colcord Ave, Waco TX 76707.
If you use PayPal, some leaders of weekly or monthly groups set up a recurring donation each month and decide if they want to share the costs with group members informally among them. The benefit to this type of more consistent and larger donation is that we can provide a tax record to the donor at the end of the year.
Other Ways to Donate / Support Good Neighbor
If your group is unable to donate even a small amount,
You may want to volunteer to help with one of the long list of indoor and outdoor projects. Some projects don’t require any particular skills, others do. If you or your group are willing to help, we can find a place for you!
You also might involve your church group or organization in a fundraising project on behalf of Good Neighbor House: car washes, yard sales, special meals, events, raffles, or other ideas you may have.
Any of these can be fun ways for your group to bond outside of its normal activities and demonstrate the idea of “mutual aid.”
Contact our Community Engagement leader (currently Barbara Bridgewater) to explore how you can help us sustain Good Neighbor:
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: 254-716-3079