We are herewith reaching out for help, hoping that we can find the support that enables us to continue building this dream. This is the summary of our community meeting from the 10.03.2019.
An update on the current status
Our success is not measurable by numbers, but rather by the incredible mix of people coming to our events and the life-altering, individual journeys towards a more sustainable lifestyle our Center helps facilitate. We get so much amazing feedback from people coming here, so we are extremely proud and happy to conclude that Phase 1 of our journey:
- To find a location
- To establish an organisation
- To validate our hypothesis: By offering an explorative space, oriented around sustainability, connection, sharing and education, collaboration, curiosity and creativity, we can nurture, support and unfold human potential and transform good intentions into sustainable action
has been successfully completed! By January 2019, we created:
- An amazing event space and a recognised brand
- A bunch of amazing projects (parentNode & Holistic Web Development; KBHFF and the Food distribution platform; the Education work group)
- Monthly Stopknappen presentations
- New company form / Socio-economic company: RSV - Registreret Socialøkonomisk Virksomhed
But – this is what our financial status looks like right now:
So, the minus at the end of each month is still around 12.000,- DKK – and that is covered through us privately, by Martin working crazy hours every day as a web development consultant.
On top of this, we currently have two people on the Core team, working full time to run think.dk, without getting paid for their efforts. Our clear ambition is to give them a living salary as well, as soon as possible.
Ironically this is not sustainable for any of us, and we reached a point where we can not carry this alone any longer. That is why we called for a meeting on March 10th – to reach out for help.
But first, let’s have a closer look at all the amazing developments of the past months:
Events at think
You might have noticed that our event calendar(link) is stuffed until we start our summer break, and this is a huge milestone – read more our seasonal schedule (link to season’s post)! Scheduling the whole season in advance makes it much easier for everyone to plan their time here, and allows each event to grow more attention online. We can already see how it makes a big different in many respects:
- More people sign up as members
- Event attendance is increasing
- The quality of events is getting even better
- More people get inspired to host events themselves
Members status – where are we and where do we need to be?
We just crossed the milestone of 50 members, yay! And we are proud to say that we moved from appreciating likes on facebook from people we never met back in our early days, to having the privilege of appreciating new members signing up that we never met! Times have changed indeed, and we are so much closer to our big aim: this space being carried by the community itself, independent of any external funding.
We also have 631 curious cats on our newsletter list, which is amazing!
Until the end of the year we strive to reach about 200 members, with a balanced mix between All-In members and Changers. This would generate an income of approx. 35.000,- DKK and therefore allow us to cover all fixed costs (except salaries) and relieve us of a lot of pressure.
One thing we learned in the past is that we have to get better at communicating why people should join us as members – it should not be about what think.dk can do for you (even though this is a lot!), but about what you can do for think.dk. If you believe that free, independent and explorative spaces that nourish the human potential, are relevant for creating a future worth living, support us!
Our Team – Core and Expansion
There are 4 people involved with running think.dk on a daily basis by now:
- Martin, who helps as much as time allows on top of his paid job
- Anja, who is managing the everyday business of think.dk
- Rosa, our Event planner and conceptualizer
- Susanne, who takes care of all the accounting – and our plants :)
On top of this, we are super grateful for the team of volunteers who support our members with event hosting and take care of smaller tasks during the week. They do a great job representing think.dk and spreading our message. So much love to you all!
We still need more hands on deck. Are you a people person? You could become a host that helps our members during evening events. Are you digitally savvy? How about managing our social media presence? Are you a strategist with a well-rounded skill set? Great, then we have some crucial fundraising tasks for you.
In short, if you have ANY spare time and would like to join our team please fill out our volunteer form and we’ll get back to you fast!
So much about the current status – let’s move on to the more juicy stuff!
Potential future developments
Right now, think.dk is at a crossroads with multiple options ahead of us. It depends on all of you, which path we will take. Here comes a short outline of the possibilities (with all except the last one being combinable):
Right now, we have 5 upcoming projects on our table – with two very concrete (ready to go) ones and three that need a bit more concept development to be ready to start off. All of them need more hands on deck to make them happen, so whether and when we’re going to start depends on future think.dk members getting excited about any of these:
- Conscious dance: We hosted dance parties here in Nov-Jan, and it was loads of fun. Plus it attracted lots of vibrant people and actually generated a relevant revenue. So let’s do more of those: we’ll start early, so your next day is not messed up. No alcohol. Shoes off. Connect and be true. Dance.
- Study out of the box: we will be offering workshops to universities who are interested in supporting out-of-the-box thinking related to a more sustainable future to their students. Concept done, case study done, next step reaching out to schools & universities and finding more facilitators.
- Sustainability consultancy: Let’s help small businesses to approach sustainability from a holistic perspective and implement a respectful handling of resources on all levels. We’ll offer this service for free to our collaborators first. Business Canvas almost done, Business mentor on board.
- Connecting the dots: there are so many altruistic initiatives out there, and all of them are too busy to connect with each other and create win-win-win situations. When two good initiatives win – society also wins. We need more spaces where organizers can reach out for help and create new synergies. We want to create a forum for leaders working towards positive change and nourishing collaboration, starting in Autumn ‘19.
- think.dk festival: This has been a long term vision of ours since we started dreaming up this place. We love festivals, because it’s much easier to get through to people when they’re out of their everyday routine. We want to create a festival that focuses on positive change, collaboration and nourishing the human potential. We have a great location already, so it’s finally in reach!
We will offer a Co-working membership very soon – to make better use of the big room during daytime, but also to offer workspace for social entrepreneurs who long for a collaborative environment that is not oriented around profit. Our current challenge is to find a setup that still allows big events during the evenings: fold-down tables, tables on wheels, all kinds of input on flexible work space design is highly appreciated!
We are in urgent need of support to help us raise funds so we can maintain the space until our members base has grown enough to cover our costs. We are in touch with the local committee of Østerbro and they expressed an interest in supporting us, but we are still waiting for a meeting with them. If you have a rich uncle who wants to do good, please tell him about us! And if you’re interested in helping us with fundraising applications please get in touch now, we need all the help we can get!
The last potential future development is also the one that is not combinable with any of the above, because taking this path would mean shutting down think.dk for good. If we do not get any help before the end of the month, we will be forced to give up this initiative. There are too many loose ends, and Martin and Anja do not have the capacity to carry the financial burden by themselves. For the first time in three years, they are emotionally prepared to give up in order to protect their family. They are herewith reaching out for help, hoping that they can find the support that enables them to continue building this dream.
Who wants to join our board?
We want to make sure that the right options will be prioritized, and that decisions are being made that ensure their successful realization – in a way that also includes our growing community.
Since we are now a registered socio-economic company, we can install a board that supervises the general direction that think.dk is taking, help guide the directors in prioritizing daily activities and share part of the weight that comes with running an organization of the new era. We are therefore calling for people to express their interest in being part of this board. The board will consist of 5 members, who will define the future path of think.dk
- What are the election rules?
3 board members will be appointed by owners (while no single owner has the ability to overrule the others), and 2 board members will be appointed by our members
- What responsibility comes with it?
It is the task of the Board to ensure that the company is operated in a proper manner so that the company's purpose is fulfilled.
Selecting the directors who are in charge of daily business
Define priority activities inside think.dk that ensure survival (e.g. future projects)
Provide guidelines for the directors’ work and guiding the directors on important decisions
Make decisions of an extraordinary nature and of great importance to the company
Ensure proper asset management and compliance with the statutory requirements for bookkeeping
Monitor and sign off on financial activities
Show up to the meetings about 4 times a year (probably more in the beginning)
- When is the first general assembly / board election?
The general assembly where we will elect the board will be announced soon - we had planned this for the 17th of March, but now Martin is sick and we need more time to prepare. We still aim for a date in March.
We are currently working to publish a more detailed post on this as soon as possible.
As a socio-economic company, we can now have more than one person owning the company.
The current valuation of think.dk is ~700.000 DKK, divided into 500 shares. We are offering 20% of the company for sale, through a capital expansion program. This means that the capital generated through owner expansion will stay in the company and help us cover the running costs until we reached a financially sustainable level of income through grown memberships, event and project income and external funding.
If you buy 5 shares (which equals 1% ownership), you invest 7000,-. If you buy 25 shares (equals 5% ownership) respectively requires an investment of ~35.000,-. You can buy as many (or as little) shares as you want, with 100 shares being the maximum. If you are interested in this please – or know anyone who could be – get in touch!
A successful expansion will cover our basic running costs for the next 6 months, which will give us enough time to reach a financial equilibrium.
Ownership grants you more influence concerning the election of board members, but more importantly, you help keep think.dk alive.
We are currently working to publish a more detailed post on this as well – stay tuned!
Thank you for reading, for your support and for sharing this!
The think.dk team