COM0011 Blog#6 “Members-Only”. Do we really need that?

When I was expecting my twins I found out some information about Canadian Multiple Birth Families Association (CMBF) I was curious to check what they had to offer. It is not very big community with around 350 families. For an affordable price of $45 per year they were offering some benefits. Members can participate in classes, events with multiple families, have access to the “Members-Only” section of the website where people can find downloadable MBFA documents and discussion forums. Members also can subscribe early to their semi-annual sale of gently used clothing, toys, and equipment, and be allowed to sell their own items there. If members volunteer their time, they can get 90% of sales.  Members also can receive support and information if needed. After reading about these benefits I felt like I was in 1980 when the information wasn’t so available as now. I do not need to be a member of any association to participate in forums, download the information, read books, find new people – everything is available in the Internet.  If I have questions about my babies I just ask our nurse or doctor. I also do not have to wait a year to buy and sell staff I just go to Kijiji and find there what I need when I need. And price is really dependent of my bargain skills. So I have decided that I will be ok for now without attending association.

A few months later my husband shared with me some information about This organization is offering great benefits to their members, such as connecting members to other women and businesses across Canada, providing affordable ways for female entrepreneurs to promote their businesses, advocating for female entrepreneurs and women in business both locally and nationally, creating an online presence for female entrepreneurs in one centralized location.  Despite that the organization is offering these great tools I personally think that in career or business area the gender is not main criteria to join any professional group or association. I would look to the field, knowingly, networking but not at gender. I mean the success stories are awesome, I definitely would like to learn from these professionals but not because they have the same gender as me but because they have something valuable to share. To me men or women organizations seems like a professional association with people who has for example blue eyes. They may be good experts with valuable experience but blue eyes are not important criteria.

When I discussed with one of my friends about these two stories she mentioned to me that I am not from North America and do not understand this part of culture.  My friend told me that to build a career and business in Canada you can only do so if you participate in these types of events and build networking and both of these groups could help me to develop. She also recommended that I check and find out positive sides of networking.

My questions to you are; I’m I wrong to think that way about these groups?  Would you recommend that I join a group that I think may be of interest and see what it’s all about?  Do you have any groups that you are a part of yourself and would recommend to me? I’m interested more in feedback about what do these types of organizations really have to offer for the price of their memberships?


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