fbpx Skip to content

Membership Dues While Our Dojang Is Closed

Most of our students pay their membership dues via monthly automatic recurring debit from their bank accounts. I’m grateful and moved by one thoughtful phenomenon that Matt Roncone (who does our books) pointed out to me yesterday: not one student has even so much as asked about whether they need to keep paying their membership dues while our dojang is closed. This extraordinary display of collective goodwill floors me, because this single quiet act, on the part of each and every one of you, says a great deal about the dedication, idealism, and generosity of our students.

Before I continue, I want to acknowledge your loyalty and thank you on behalf of the RVTKD Partners and our entire dojang.

We would like to repay your goodwill with two gestures: transparency about our finances and a choice for how to proceed with memberships during a lockdown of unknown duration.

  1. Dojang Finances
    First, a bit of good news: our landlords have made us a fair and considerate offer to cut our rent in half while the school is closed. I wish all landlords were this proactive, because many (most?) are not. It’s not fair for a business to be forced to pay its entire rent while they don’t have access to their space, but landlords obviously have expenses of mortgages, insurance, repairs, etc. too, and they can’t afford to simply waive their income entirely. Half rent seems like a reasonable solution, in which each party shares some pain during this global emergency. We thank them for their thoughtfulness as well.The bad news is that, like our landlords, we have ongoing expenses beyond just rent, so we can’t afford to simply waive our membership dues either. Since none of our instructors get paid for their teaching, rent is obviously our largest single expense, but there are many others that we have to continue whether we’re open or not. Therefore, we propose the following for the duration of the pandemic until it becomes both legal and safe for us to reopen:
  2. Individual Contributions Via Membership Dues
    We know that everyone is suffering, and everyone’s finances (job, housing, medical expenses, replenishing toilet paper reserves, etc.) are different. Our rent reduction allows us to offer to all of you the ability to pay what you can until we reopen. If you would like to continue paying your normal membership, much as many arts patrons are donating their ticket prices for canceled shows to venues instead of requesting refunds, we will accept your support with gratitude. If your finances, like many peoples, are precarious during this time, and you would like to suspend your membership, or reduce the amount you pay, until we reopen, we understand and will accommodate you.

We hope this offer won’t create a false impression that our school has vast cash reserves, and that everyone can stop paying dues indefinitely. We don’t, and although we have a small cash reserve that should allow us to reopen, even after months of hardship, our situation would quickly become untenable if everyone were to stop paying dues at once.

The word dojang refers to both the physical space and the community of people who comprise our school. Be strong and resilient, be judicious and reasonable with your personal finances, and please keep the financial health of our dojang¬†in your mind and hearts. We gratefully accept whatever you can afford to do to keep us afloat, we respect the reality of everyone’s unique situation, and above all, we look forward to reopening as soon as we can, so this all becomes moot! Until we train together again. . .

This Post Has 0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top