A new survey has shown 50 percent of LGBTI Victorians believe the ALSO Foundation still has a place in the community but its leaders say it will only continue with new blood.
More than 200 people responded to a recent online survey organised by the former LGBTI peak body’s management committee on the future of the organisation.
While half the survey participants wanted to keep the flailing organisation afloat, a third said they were unsure and just 16 percent said it no longer had a place.
More than two-thirds of participants said ALSO should focus on LGBTI advocacy while aged care its second priority at 60 percent.
Project developments and LGBTI events were the least preferred areas to focus on.
Only four board members are left on the ALSO Foundation’s management committee and they have declared that if they cannot find new board members by the end of November, they will wind it down.
ALSO Foundation board member Wayne Elliott told the Star Observer this ultimatum put the organisation’s future in the community’s hands.
“Personally, if we don’t get any new board members, we’ll be winding it up,” he said.
“These people have expressed their views, like I said some people wanted to save it but it’s the point of saying if you want to save the organisation, then you have to step up to the plate.”
He said he was disappointed only 210 people responded to the survey over a week.
The organisation has fewer than 300 members at the moment and only 45 percent of survey participants said they were members.
He said he was not surprised by the 50/50 split between people who wanted the organisation to continue and people who did not or did not care.
“Most people were disgruntled with what’s happened in the past so I wasn’t really surprised with that,” he said.
“What I was more surprised with was the amount of people that did the survey.”
The survey attracted passionate reactions from the both sides of the debate.
“ALSO lost their way a long time ago, although I respect the dedication of the people at ALSO it would be better spent with another organization [sic],” one participant said.
“Save the ALSO Foundation!” said another.
Elliott said the management committee would like to produce the ALSO Directory before they call administrators in to cease trading but that depended on whether they found new board members in time.