Near & Far Aid, a fundraising and fund-granting organization with more than 60 years of history in the community, held their annual meeting September 18, 2017. Key points of business included granting budgets, transfer of presidential power and election of new members to the Board of Directors. For the fiscal year concluding August 31, Near & Far Aid granted $1,172,500 to 107 agencies throughout Fairfield County who meet the organization’s mission of targeting poverty and changing lives. The agency fielded more than 150 grant requests this past year and anticipate inquiries to increase in coming years as state budgets continue to contract. As a funder, Near & Far Aid works with grantees advising them on issues of financial security and sustainable growth, connecting agencies when prudent in order to eliminate redundancies and ensure constituencies’ needs are still met. The changing landscape of budgetary constraints proves to be a challenge for all but Near & Far Aid remains committed to finding and funding the best agencies and programs with proven results that will effect lasting change.
Outgoing President Joan Panagos passed the gavel to incoming President Kim Meier. Of her time as President Panagos remarked, “The most rewarding experience of my term was my involvement with the agencies we fund and the clients they support. Meeting the people in our community that are benefiting from our efforts is an extraordinary gift.” Meier, who served the last two years as Vice President and has served prior years in other capacities including Corporate Sponsorship Chair, accepted the gavel with recognition of the vast amount of institutional knowledge in the room, including several past presidents in attendance including Laura Wilbur, Susan Bonner, Jeanne Burris and Bitsy Higgins as well as Advisory Directors with decades of service. Meier anticipates the work of Near & Far Aid to be transformative in every way, yet remain true to the mission and roots of the organization.
New members were elected to the Board of Directors, bringing the total number of seats held to 25. New directors are Katie Dresch (Fairfield), Kelly Imschweiler (Fairfield), Sarah Parsons (Fairfield), and Jaclyn Picarillo (Fairfield). Visit the website or more information on the work of Near & Far Aid.