Foundation for Endangered Languages
2. Development of the Foundation
Announcements 2004: AGM and Election nominations
As Secretary to the Executive Committee of the Foundation for Endangered Languages I hereby give notice that:
1. The 8th Annual General Meeting of the Foundation will take place on 2nd October, 2004 at Institut d'Estudis Catalans, Barcelona starting at 18:00
All members are entitled to attend and vote at this meeting.
2. The Agenda will comprise:
1. Minutes of the 7th AGM
Any additional items for the agenda should be sent to reach the President by 21 September, 2003
3. The membership of the Executive Committee for the year following 2 October, 2004 will be chosen at this meeting.
Nominations for election to the Executive Committee should be sent to reach the President by 21 September 2004.
There are up to 15 places on the Committee and should nominations exceed vacancies, election will be by ballot.
FEL inc becomes US tax-exempt
As of August 12, 2004, FEL Inc. (the US arm of FEL) is officially a 501(c)(3) tax exempt public charity. Our tax-exempt status is retroactive to the date of the FEL Inc.'s incorporation in North Carolina (i.e. September 25, 2003) and remains in effect until August 2007 (at which time IRS will review our status to make sure we are still eligible). US donors can now receive full tax credit for gifts to the Foundation.
Please contact our US representative, Blair Rudes, if you would like more details, or to make a donation to FEL inc.
Blair A. Rudes, 8300 Paces Oakes Boulevard #111, Charlotte NC 28213, USA. BARudes@aol.com
Cheques should be made out to "Foundation for Endangered Languages Inc.", and receipts will be mailed by return.
A Vision for FEL's Future
Nicholas Ostler, the Chairman (also the Editor of Ogmios), wrote to the Executive Committee on 11 July 2004, a week before the Committee meeting on the 18th.
1. Our current situation
In addition to our traditional activities (grants, conferences, proceedings sales, newsletter, web-site - all under England charitable status) we have currently three new items close to ready, which should enable some new departures for FEL:
a. a fund-raising document, including costings for a small, part-time, but permanent, administrative operation
b. a fundraising website in the USA, linking donors to projects
c. tax-free exemption (under 501c3) in the USA, allowing us proper financial status in the USA as well as UK
2. Our immediate plans for new support activities
a. have an administrative assistant, to put our regular activities on a more regular footing
b. begin campaign to raise funds for the Foundation from established funders
c. catalogue language communities (each with representative with whom we have links) to create network of Foundation projects
3. New Long-Term activities aimed at linking people directly with particular language communities
a. "adopt a language", through the US website (1b) and established links (2c)
b. "language volunteers", placing in touch with communities those (concerned outsiders) who want to get involved in documenting, protecting or promoting a language
The overall intent of this new stage is to make FEL a more "hands-on" organization, extending the personal involvement which is such a feature of our conferences to the actual experience of FEL members. Henceforth, besides being generally positive to EL through joining FEL, people would have the opportunity for real contact with endangered language communities, whether through providing a more personal (and persistent) funding stream for work in them, or through actually getting experience in field linguistics and projects bound up with language/literacy/publishing.
4. Concrete moves to initiate the new phase
a. write job description for the new assistant, and appoint him/her (Important question: can this appointment precede the securing of new funds (via 2b)? Thanks to the latest Crystal gift, we do have a small tranche of unallocated funds for this. And if so, it would be possible for the assistant to speed progress in 4b and 4c, systematically contacting funding sources, and our background of language communities.)
b. correspond with established funding organizations (already listed by Salem Mezhoud)
c. correspond with all previous grant-recipients
d. confer with sources of language-documentation training (esp. Rausing fund at SOAS) - a necessary prerequisite to placing "language volunteers"
e. integrate 3a "adopt a language" programme, advertising in the first instance to FEL members
f. integrate 3b "language volunteers" programme
5. Overall points
The result would be a much more active organization, though not as such (politically) activist.
FEL would be building on its perceived strengths as an organization that provides useful links between people of good will and language communities, and secondarily as a channel for funds to useful EL work of various kinds.
No other EL organization is doing anything like "adopt a language", or "language volunteers", essentially building a permanent global network.
I am already getting (usually young) volunteers of the type required and have nowhetre to channel the good will involved.
Such a volunteer network might give a more focused idea of where FEL funds (or members'/donors' funds) should be usefully applied.
Note: The document was well-received at the Executive Committee meeting; and action was agreed on point 4a.
The Editor requests the opinions and suggestions of FEL members on any of these points.
Barcelona Conference: Provisional Programme for FEL VIII
On The Margins Of Nations
Fri. 1 October
Sat. 2 October
Sun. 3 October