What does membership provide?

By Patricia Coffie

What does membership provide?

Payback on what you invest. When members cease to invest time and talent as well as money, organizations die.

I am currently a member of a family group, two historical societies, a storytellers’ guild, a regional storytelling organization (five states and the others too), a national storytelling organization, and a library organization or two.

Among them, I have shared my own expertise and elevated that expertise through the friendships, gatherings, workshops, hints, events, performance opportunities, hard work, and camaraderie available in each. I have traveled in depth and detail with family, friends, puppeteers, storytellers, and librarians to places near and far.

I have served as ‘pert near every officer in these groups and some more than once. I have served on boards. I have done the grunt work—set ups and tear downs, fund-raising, member-building, budgeting, planning, pursuing, practicing, learning and learning. I have been there for the ideas and worked toward their fruition more than once. I have championed ideas and actions and championed the ideas and actions of others.

I have enriched my resume as well as my life.

I continue to marvel at and to follow those whom I have met and admired along the way.

In specific objects? I have newsletters, magazines, blogs as part of the communication that leads to all the sharing. I have received discounts for events. I have taken the initiative to send workshop, fringe, showcase, and concert applications and loved every one that was granted. I have given and received in the Arts I support.

Just paying dues and being a member has never been satisfying enough for me. I know the paybacks from investing time, talent, and energy as well as paying dues.

Lean in, step up, settle for more—together we are more and those Arts and people we love can be more as well.

Patricia Coffie
Stories from Home
Waverly, IA
There’s a story for that…


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