Non-profit or For-profit, that is the question?
People ask me if KeyLyme is a non-profit or try to convince me to make it a non-profit. Don't get me wrong, I love nonprofits and completely support them. But, I don't know anything about how to run a nonprofit, but I do know how to run a business. There are many Lyme non profits and we have a great local one - the national capital Lyme association. They know what they're doing and they do it best! They work with legislation to make changes for you and most don't even know it. Did you know NatCapLyme is the organization that wrote the bill and hot it passed on the hill that doctors have to legally tell you if your test comes back negative that it doesn't mean you Font have Lyme disease. They are fabulous at what they do.
I have thought long and hard for two years as to whether or not I would like to structure my efforts through a non-profit or for-profit business. I have been exposed to business for the past 12 years and it's really a strength of mine. I don't know much about running a non-profit, like I do a business, so it would be a great learning curve for me.
However, I do recognize the fact that Lyme non-profits are very important. I have been very involved with the National Capital Lyme Disease Association (NatCapLyme) for the past four years. They are a local non-profit with very little overhead and are a 100% volunteer organization. It was started by a woman, Monte Skall who suffered from Lyme herself, over 16 years ago and still continues to be spearheaded by herself and husband. I lead the local Loudoun County Chapter for NatCapLyme, hold the monthly Loudoun support group meetings, as well as serve as their Marketing & Development Advisor.
I understand the pros of structuring KeyLyme as a non-profit, but I would like to focus on bringing Lyme Disease awareness through a different avenue and utilize my strength of knowing how to run a business. Plus, I would rather support NatCapLyme, a local non-profit that I am already passionate about, instead of "competing" against them. I am and will continue to be involved with NatCapLyme and intend to bring their organization to the forefront in everything I do. For instance, 5% of all proceeds from the sales of the KeyLyme repellent (and potentially more products in the future) will be donated to NatCapLyme.
Also, KeyLyme has partnered with Tarara winery and is hosting a fundraiser event called Concert for a Cause on September 10th with all of the proceeds benefiting NatCapLyme. You can read more about the event here. NatCapLyme truly needs/appreciates the funds. They utilize the donations they receive appropriately and put a lot of their donations towards effective programs. In fact, they are the organization that introduced a bill in VA that states doctors legally have to tell you if your lyme test comes back negative that it doesn't mean you don't have Lyme disease. I couldn't think of a better non-profit organization for Lyme disease to contribute my time and efforts.