|SOS from U.S. Brig Niagara|
The Flagship Niagara's sailing program is in danger of being shut down. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) is considering cutting funding for the ship's sailing program, which is guaranteed to diminish the ship’s volunteer program. Niagara volunteers donate more than $100,000 worth of volunteer maintenance services to the ship each year.
If the ship stops sailing, the volunteers will stop volunteering. The ship has represented Pennsylvania and Erie and retold its famous history to more than 650,000 people since 1992. Her sailing program has grown at a rate of 25 percent per year since the ship became a Sailing School Vessel in 2005. The program is now almost completely self-sufficient. If the PHMC will agree to maintain the ship, the Flagship Niagara League (FNL), which is the 501 c3 non-profit organization that is chartered to support the ship, can maintain the sailing program through earned income alone. This drive for support will ensure that the earned income is supported by local contributions that will guarantee the survival of the ship.
The goal is to raise $200,000 by September 14 of 2009.
An individual membership for the Flagship Niagara League is only $25. Visit brigniagara.org to join and petitiononline.com/10Sep13/petition.html to sign a petition that will be sent to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
The Commission has agreed to allow the ship to keep sailing if the FNL can generate more support for the ship and the ship’s sailing program.
Visit causes.com/FlagshipNiagara for updates.