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Guild member retention during covid

Guild member retention during covid

Old 08-31-2020, 12:41 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Indiana
Posts: 1,497

I am in two guilds. One is meeting virtually for meetings only. The church where we've been having our meetings has said we cannot meet in their parking lot or building. The other is letting us meet in the parking lot and it's working out ok for the time being. I really don't know what we will do when the weather gets bad.

It's a tough decision. Some members are dying to get back to normal and really miss sewing with friends. Others have been dealing with non-covid illnesses (cancer, knee surgeries) and don't want to risk it. I wish I had a better answer.
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Old 08-31-2020, 03:07 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Portage, Michigan
Posts: 5,582

My quilting group of 50 plus has been Zooming twice a week for just time to sew together. We have had one mini retreat where we Zoom for a couple of hours then leave and check back in later in the day. This worked very well and we whooped it up with snacks, jokes and silliness much like our retreats. Not the same but better than whining. We are planning another in October to replace our fall retreat. Our normal meeting place will allow us to use the space for less than 50 but that does not allow for any social distancing. Most members are not willing to meet shoulder to shoulder, me neither. We are mourning the loss of time together, holiday party, exchanges, our donation table and Saturday work days but we are willing to forego the meetings to keep each other healthy.

We have continued our block of the month and mystery quilts with no problem. The exchange block is a quandary of options to be determined. This is the perfect year for collecting memories of our COVID experience and 2020!
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Old 08-31-2020, 04:44 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: USA
Posts: 625

Our guild has 250+ members and 2 chapters - a Monday evening and Tuesday morning. Pre-Covid we met in a large church auditorium. We have now been doing Zoom meetings. The Zoom meetings still include the business reports, show & tell, education demo, and speakers. While I miss the in person contact and after meeting lunches, the Zoom meetings have benefits too. It's much easier to see/hear the education, show & tell, and speaker presentations. With the ability of the camera to zoom in, it's easier to see more detail on the show & tell and speaker trunk show quilts. It's also easier to hear the people talking, because in the auditorium meetings the presenter's voice sometimes got lost, even with microphones. I don't have to spend time doing my makeup, driving, parking, hauling my show & tell quilts to a meeting, etc. with Zoom. When the snow and ice of winter descend upon us, I'm sure I'll probably appreciate the Zoom meetings even more.
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Old 08-31-2020, 05:18 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Midwest
Posts: 5,026

Originally Posted by GingerK View Post
At the last executive meeting, it was decided to suspend guild meetings until the New Year. Annual fees will be just over half the regular fee. Newsletters and BOM's will continue on a monthly basis. There are several reasons for not having actual meetings--only 50 people allowed in the whole complex, which would cause great uncertainty to the number of members allowed to attend. The necessity to hire a cleaner at the Guild's expense--as much as $50 for a single meeting. And many many of our members are seniors. We are erring on the side of caution.

Suggestions for keeping the 'flame alive' were more QBA classes--small groups learning a technique from a fellow guild member, people with similar interests meeting in smaller groups, a rather convoluted way of dropping off and picking up bags for our Bag Ladies round robin that has been on hold since last March. Many of the older members do not even have a computer so Zoom is hit and miss. We did have some speakers who offered video trunk shows. We'll see how that goes.

at this point I think our Guild will meet in the New year. Sad....
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Old 09-01-2020, 01:33 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 3,398

Our guild meets in a church gym. We wear masks and have the entire gym to social distance. It works out great! 1 person stays about 20 feet away from the main activity due to pre-existing health issues. We have Sew & Tell at a safe distance. The Gym space allows Demos on techniques to be done at safe distances.

Last month we brought an orphan block and told the story behind Why it became an orphan block. We were taught How to Tie a quilt. We played a word game from a print out. ( all new pencils or using our own pens).
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Old 09-01-2020, 03:26 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Florida
Posts: 5,550

One of my Guilds is slowly ramping up. The church where we meet is reopening. No food or drink but we can meet. Mostly show and tells of what we have all been doing. The largest Guild I belong to doesn't seem to be going anywhere. It has older members who aren't computer savy and don't care to be. I'll miss them, I don't think they will come back after this. I think it was an outing for them. They added so much to the group in their wisdom, experience, and beautiful quilts.
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Old 09-02-2020, 06:53 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: kansas
Posts: 6,396

Ran into a quilting friend that lives about 40 miles away who belongs to 2 guilds other those I belong to. I am no longer doing shopping in my hometown as there is no mask mandate, so go to neighboring town. She said they had done extensive training on both iPad and PC for their guild via their FB page on how to use Zoom. And they've been having "sew days"--about 3 hrs of sew at your own home but have Zoom going so you can chat and show friends what you are doing--muting when you are running your machine. She said they are also doing workshops and have schedule Zoom speakers. She suggested checking on Global Quilting Network for information on presenters that are doing Zoom meetings.

I love how so many groups, and guilds and families are turning to on-line apps to stay connected remotely during this darn pandemic--of course not as satisfying as face-to-face, but I can't even imagine life without the online connections.
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