Dear 2009 Members,
As each of you received our summer e-mailings and communications, I am sure you realized that OIRF was once again in a state of transition. Many of the changes initiated during the summer months are outlined within my letter to all members, colleagues and friends which was mailed (by postal mail) to you on September 8. I am not going to go through all of that again here. But, for our supporting members like you, I wanted to give you a better understanding of what has been happening and how we are responding.
On July 5th we quietly passed the fifth anniversary of Dr. Walter Sturm’s death, and a few days before that the 37th anniversary of Occidental Institute. But in spite of that history, the economic crisis of the past year has hit OIRF as hard as it has hit any organization. As a privately funded non-profit organization, our financial losses have significantly affected our ability to conduct day-to-day operations, and we have been forced to acknowledge and respond to a series of very important crossroads.
As a non-profit foundation our mission to promote biological medicine remains foremost. It is our responsibility and our obligation to continue to serve that mission and our members, and to take Dr. Sturm’s legacy of knowledge about natural healing into the future. Our dedicated staff, directors, advisors and I have taken a serious look at OIRF’s operating structure and organization, and have used this opportunity to do some deep restructuring. We went over every aspect of the organization with a fine toothed comb – every activity, project and business practice – looking for places where we can cut costs (at one point we even looked at finding new owner/directors).
We are convinced, however, that at the same time we are experiencing these difficulties, we must recognize that this economic crisis is an unprecedented opportunity to promote biological medicine. In light of that crisis the need for safe and cost-effective health care is more evident than ever before.
We are also convinced that we cannot further curtail or eliminate any of our activities and projects. What we can do during this time of transition is to take the necessary steps that will ensure our fiscal viability and that take advantage of the current upsurge of interest in alternative and biological medicine.
At this critical time in our history – politically, economically and fiscally – we want all of you to know that we are caring for “The Institute’s” future. We want to reassure you that OIRF will continue to work tirelessly to serve you and to fulfill our mission to bring these biological healing methods from Germany to all of our English speaking practitioners.
Together we can spread the word about biological medicine and protect it for future generations. We are most decidedly at a crossroads in history, and it is crucial that we stand together to secure a place for biological medicine in that history. Only with your ongoing memberships, donations and support can OIRF continue to serve in this capacity. For, with this medicine, we can heal ourselves, our families, our communities and our planet.
Many of the previous comments have been liberally plagiarized from an open letter to members of the National Center for Homeopathy. Their struggle, like ours, has left them struggling to survive the economic crisis but still attempting to protect our legacies and move forward into the future. I ask all OIRF members to support them also whenever possible.
A Summary of some of the changes and activities at OIRF for 2009:
- “The Bridge” newsletter will be delivered by e-mail to most members.
- Most future announcements and notices will also be sent by e-mail.
- Germany Tour #36 arrangements have all been finalized. To date approximately half of the available places have been filled.
- US Post Office Box 2950 in Oroville, Washington has been closed.
- OIRF will continue to recommend specific German and Austrian instrumentation. Member discount pricing will be continued.
- Sadly, some staffing has been reduced, but Elaine and Carolyn will remain in the office full time.
- After damage from “the flood” has been repaired (see posted letter of Sept. 8, 2009), we will begin finding new homes for many of the unused and older instrumentation from Dr. Sturm’s medical office.
- Duplicated homeopathic remedy sets are being sorted and prepared for sale.
- Former home study (extension training) acupuncture program is being scanned onto electronic media for easier accessibility.
- All old school records and files are being scanned onto electronic media so that paper files can be destroyed.
- All instrumentation files and records are also being scanned onto electronic media.
It is our hope to reduce our “stuff” and thus our physical and environmental footprint. The directors and staff will be re-assessing our progress with these projects at the end of 2009 and decisions will then be made concerning how we will bravely move forward into the future.
We thank all of you for your support. This has been a tough year and it has taken the support and assistance of all of you to successfully move forward. We are convinced that we are taking the correct turns at these crossroads to sustain our mission over the long term and we are excited about finding new strategies to implement those choices.
Walter D. Sturm, DAcu, PhD, HMD
Nov. 23, 1944 – July 5, 2004
Taken too soon, but at the right time. We will always miss you “Boss”. Now it is our turn to remember your dreams, and your mission to bring biological medicine into recognition and acceptance. Now it is our turn to pick up your threads of genius, and allow them to weave a new future.