In public we cry of the job losses and the closure of companies in the sectors where we organise. But at home in Numsa, we forget that these job losses must affect Numsa's income as well!
During the struggles of the 1980s and 1990s, donations from foreign trade unions cushioned us against the harsh realities of finding money for our education programme, paying for staff members and other activities.
Now there is little foreign money to do this. The chart showing how our income has dropped in real terms since 1998, tells the story of job losses in our sectors.
And you can also see how the hard work done by Numsa's National Finance Committee and full-time staff in the finance department to put checks on how we spend our money has given us results. We have made savings on expenses by renegotiating contracts for photocopy machines, faxes and telephones. Whereas in 1998 and 1999 our expenses were above our income, since then our expenditure has fallen below that.
But the battle to know just who and how many members we have and which companies have paid us and which haven't, is still top of our agenda. That is why the MEMS project to computerise all membership records is so important.
What Project 4 will do:
continue to implement the MEMS project (to computerise all membership forms) and report on progress to Central Committees the National Finance Committee to commission a study to review: how our sectors are likely to grow or shrink in numbers over the next 5 years and how this will affect our income what income and/or membership we will need to sustain our current levels of activities and what we will need if we want to increase our activities.