President's Message 2021 - Autumn

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On July 25th, the CVC Executive met for what will possibly be one of our few remaining meetings.

If this sounds bleak, it is. 

The Canadian Volvo Club began over 40 years ago, at which time consisted of a small group of Volvo enthusiasts – buying, fixing and restoring Volvo automobiles. The 120 & 1800 series were a popular choice. Many of the founding members are still with us today and continue to be an active part of the club. That in itself is amazing.

In addition to the founding members, I and others came on board at a later date and built, fostered and incorporated the club to the status it now boasts today, as a not-for-profit corporation. This same core of individuals has invested over 30 – 40 years of commitment, keeping the club alive, while at the same time, keeping it relevant. We have embraced technologies, adopted social media and have kept on the cutting edge of all things Volvo. We have become Ambassadors of the Volvo Brand.

Timing is everything, and I’m at odds as to where we find ourselves today as Volvo Cars continues to enjoy the best in the history of the brand. It is an exciting time for Volvo. In comparison, we, the Canadian Volvo Club, are looking at the future and it’s not our finest moment.

While it is no secret that I expressed a desire to step down as President over two years ago, the intention was sincere, and was intended to take the club to the next level. Finding a younger, more energetic and “tuned-in” individual for this position seemed like the right thing to do.

But remember the founding members and the core group of folks mentioned earlier? Well, simply put, we are now older. As you get older, you get tired. Make no mistake, the time and effort that is put into running a corporation, hosting events, being fiscally responsible while being accountable to members, is no small feat.  It takes work, it takes commitment and it takes energy. The responsibilities continue throughout the year and must be attended to on an on-going basis by dedicated volunteers. Members come and go, volunteers come and go and life goes on. We can all agree that life is finite. So it is important that torches are passed, younger generations are listened to and the health of the club is kept in good hands.

Let me preface by saying that the amount of support we have received from the Volvo Community, Volvo Car Canada & Dealer Principals has been nothing short of outstanding. Their support has been unwavering for decades. On the other hand, our cry for volunteers to help run the club has been a mantra heard time and time again, year after year.  Yet we continue to find ourselves with the same small core group of individuals who step up and volunteer in time of need. For that I am truly thankful.

So, with that said, your CVC Executive has found themselves once again returning to a conversation started over two years go – is there a future for the CVC, or would it be responsible and prudent to dissolve the corporation?

After much back and forth, much discussion and much compromise, we came up with a plan.

This is a formal and desperate plea, requesting a number of folks to step up and take on the many responsibilities needed in running a not-for-profit. It is a commitment that usually lasts for many years. 

It’s a lot to ask.

We will once again present the situation we find ourselves in at our next AGM, where much of what I have written will be repeated. It will also be an opportunity for those who would like to step up to make their intentions known, with the hope that this message has spread among the Volvo community and folks respond.

I want to say we are cautiously optimistic, but the AGM (Annual General Meeting) on October 16th, 2021 will ultimately decide our next move. In the event we don’t get an overwhelming, convincing commitment from a minimum of 6 individuals willing to take on the role as a Director, and from those same individuals or others to take on the roles of Officers (President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Chair, Newsletter Editor etc.), by December 31st, 2021, the Executive will make a motion to begin the process of “dissolving the Corporation of Canadian Swedish Iron.

This simply begins a timeline towards dissolving the corporation and all its responsibilities. We have agreed to remain committed to holding the July 24, 2022, 40th Anniversary Celebration of Family Day, with the possibility of dissolving the club at a later date if sufficient members have not come forward.

While our last meeting was difficult and this was difficult to write, the reality is, this is where Canadian Swedish Iron Inc. (CVC) finds itself today. It remains my duty to get the messaging out there, to listen to others, and to act on the will of the Executive. 

I remain committed to the club.

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Tony Giverin, President

Canadian Volvo Club