Membership Dues Policy

Belizean Grove Membership Dues Policy 

Purpose: Membership dues are the main way of supporting core expenses of the Belizean Grove organization, incurred to deliver membership experience. Membership dues typically cover 92-97% of these core expenses, which includes staff salaries and benefits, IT and subscription costs, professional services, insurance, retreat planning costs, membership scholarships, etc. Grove members are committed to participating and engaging with other members, often described as Sisters because of the deep bonds formed. Making a monetary commitment via membership dues to support the organization is another sign of commitment to our shared values, goals, and each other.

Who is Covered: All members of the Belizean Grove

Policy: All Belizean Grove members across all cohorts of members are required to pay annual membership dues to be considered a member in good standing, participate in any Belizean Grove events, and have access to Belizean Grove websites, networks, and other benefits. New members also pay a one-time initiation fee of $1000. Membership dues are not refundable.

Timing: Membership dues cover the following calendar year. Dues collection begins in the summer with a discount period for early payment. (Typically a $100 discount has been available). Thereafter the full dues price is paid. After November 1, a late fee of $100 will be assessed. Those members who have not paid by Dec 31st will lose access to all Grove events, the Grove website, and Grove communications. Their  name will be removed from Website and Facebook.

Cohorts: All Belizean Grove members are valued for the unique perspectives and life experiences they bring to our organization. All cohorts of members have equal access to Belizean Grove membership benefits and activities. The Grove also recognizes that many members in our newest cohort are earlier in their careers and still establishing themselves and their families from an economic perspective. Thus, the organization has set lower annual dues for this group. Initially the TARA cohort was covered by this clause, until TARA’s advanced in their careers and their membership dues equalized with the Grove cohort. Currently the Nyomi cohort, as the newest cohort, benefits from these reduced dues. It is expected at some point in the next decade, a new cohort will be added and the Nyomi membership dues will equalize with Grove and TARA membership dues.

Dues Reduction Policy: Limited membership spots are reserved every year for members experiencing extenuating circumstances who are unable to support their membership responsibilities.

Impact Dues Reduction: As the Belizean Grove continues to strive for professional, geographic, and age related diversity among our membership, some women leaders who have dedicated their careers to nonprofit organizations, international development, or similar financially disadvantaged fields or others whose income has been substantially reduced may require a longer-term membership discount in order to participate. The special membership dues fee for this group will be $650 annually with no further discounts extended.

Members who believe they should qualify for this special dues reduction should reach out to the Co-CEOs via email and briefly describe the circumstances supporting their request.

Annually the Finance Co-chairs with the co-CEOs will review these requests confidentially and determine membership dues abatement for one year.

Hardship Exceptions: Upon rare occasions of unusual hardship, members can apply for one year of membership dues abatement by sending an email describing very briefly:

1.) The circumstance of the hardship, i.e., long term unemployment, severe illness or disability, etc.

2.) The suggested membership dues contribution the member can accommodate that year.

Annually the Finance Co-chairs with the co-CEOs will review these requests confidentially and determine membership dues abatement for one year.

*Members who are granted dues forgiveness are allowed to participate in all Grove activities.

Sabbatical Policy: While retreat attendance remains the heart and soul of the Grove, membership is not contingent on one’s ability to travel. Access to the Grove’s exceptional network is a year-round privilege facilitated by regional gatherings, virtual events, and ongoing Grove communication. It is expected that members will fulfill their dues responsibilities to retain membership privileges. Unless for other circumstances noted above, nonpayment of dues will constitute resignation from the Grove. At any time, resigned members can reapply for membership through the membership process, and will be responsible for the current initiation fee (presently $1000) if readmitted.

Dues Setting Process: The membership dues fee structure will be reviewed annually with the goal of keeping dues as low as possible to run the organization effectively.  The Finance Committee will make a recommendation to the CEOs and Executive Committee if and when changes are needed in the membership dues amount or timing. Membership dues for the Grove cohort fees have remained at $1250 since 2006 (except for 2014-2016 when dues were $1350) and TARA cohort dues have been at $1250 since 2018. Nyomi cohort fees are currently $750.