PEERS 2021 Annual Report
"The service you render to your fans and followers is unequaled and is ever so inspiring and informative. I'm blessed to be on the receiving end of the wonderful energy that you put out into the world. Love & Light to you." ~~ Rev. Sandi, July 25, 2021
PEERS (Public Education and Empowerment Resource Service) was officially incorporated in January of 2006 as a nonprofit umbrella organization for the 13 websites focused on education and transformation now under its management. In keeping with the desire to create a new paradigm for our world, everything offered by PEERS is free of charge. We are able to survive and even thrive thanks to the many generous donations of our supporters and volunteers.
As of the end of 2021, PEERS has provided inspiration and education to many millions of caring people around the globe for 16 years. Over this time, we are thrilled to have received a cumulative total of over 33 million visits to our websites. PEERS continues to touch countless people's hearts and make a difference in our world in a most meaningful way.
2021 was a highly unusual year for PEERS. Financially, an anonymous donor gifted us with a huge donation in cryptocurrency worth over $500,000. Wow!!! An avid follower of our work for several years, he stated that most of this gift was for PEERS, but asked us to share some of the wealth with other worthy organizations. We eventually donated about $159,000 to 25 outstanding nonprofits and deposited $378,000 into our own bank account. What a most wonderful expression of support!
Considering that in recent years our annual expenses were in the range of $75,000, this amazing gift will allow us to expand our very small team, which previously consisted of only one full-time employee (Executive Director Fred Burks) and three very part time contractors. As a result of this donation, we have already taken on one wonderful new contractor and have a talented man from the Netherlands who we are hoping to hire full time in early 2022. We are exploring other ways of using this gift and expanding our operations to reach many more people in the coming years.
Thanks to our huge gift, the total income of PEERS in 2021 was $451,882, over five times the highest we've ever received in a year. Even though we significantly increased our expenses, we ended the year a whopping $387,000 in the plus column.
This gift came at a opportune time, as the number of visits to our websites dropped a full 33% compared to 2021, continuing a downward trend since 2013, when the PEERS websites received 10,000 visits a day. In this past year, we received a total of only 800,000 visits, averaging about 2,200 visits a day for the year. Sadly, this is our lowest number of visits since 2006. The reason for this is mostly that Google has pushed smaller and alternative websites like ours ever further down their search lists since 2013, and the large majority of our visits come from Google searches. We hope with this large donation to find ways to reverse that trend.
The number of subscribers to our two email lists increased slightly over the year by about 100, so that we now have about 16,500 subscribers from over 160 countries.
“We are definitely living through crazy times, but we chose to be here now to shine a light and help raise Earth's vibration. Keep up your great work, because people need a trusted source to go to when they are beginning to wake up. There is so much misinformation out there even in the alternative media, so it is great to have a site like 'Want to Know' to send friends and family to when they start to question the mainstream narrative.” ~~ Jo E. on July 27, 2021
The total number of donors to PEERS dropped sharply from 720 to 475 this year. This is likely because as a result of the huge donation, our appeals for donations had no urgency as they usually do in normal years. The number of supporters giving monthly contributions dropped only 2% to 146, while the total donated monthly decreased 7% to $1,971 per month. With $387,000 in the bank at the end of the year, PEERS for the first time is on very solid financial footing, enabling us to step up even more in making a difference in many people's lives and in our world.
The large decrease in number of website visits was felt on all of our websites. Compared with 2020, WantToKnow.info, experienced a decrease of 29% in the number of visits in 2021, with 505,000 visits to the site (about 1,400 visits a day). Even so, since 2006 WantToKnow.info has received over 24 million visits and continues to educate and empower hundreds of people worldwide every day.
""Thanks for your website. It helps us old timers looking for answers to this crazy world., Robert S. on WantToKnow.info, July 3, 2021
Our second and third most popular sites also had significant losses. The Personal Growth Courses website decreased by 45% to 164,000 visits for the year, while the Web of Love website dropped 27% down to 23,000 visits. That said, the PEERS websites continue to make a difference in people's lives. We regularly receive wonderfully supportive and grateful feedback on our websites, email lists, and online courses. Here is one more of the many wonderful emails of support we received this year.
"I just finished lesson one of your incredibly rich course. I have been so enriched just by this first lesson. I am stunned by the information you have collected and presented. And one feels that in all this, you are motivated by such a deep love of humanity and desire for world peace. I could imagine few things more powerful than what you present. With a Niagara of blessings on you." ~~ Pierre P. on the Transformation Course, Oct. 3, 2021
Two new additions this past year were first, a new search engine for our awesome database that has summaries of nearly 12,000 revealing news articles, and second, an awesome complete makeover for the WantToKnow.info home page at WantToKnow.info. We were long overdue for this remake. Thankfully our big donation made it possible to do a really good job of it.
The Personal Growth Courses
Since the launch our first online course in 2007, 344 individuals have now registered and completed one of our four free courses, while thousands more have done so without registering. Though only five people completed a course in 2021, almost every registered participant gives glowing reviews upon completion of a course. As registration is not required to take a course, we calculate from website statistics that 30 or more unregistered individuals completed a course in this last year, and many hundreds engaged in one or more of the fascinating lessons available free of charge.
"A brilliant presentation of ideas and philosophy encompassing all aspects of human life on planet Earth. The inclusion of the darker side of life as well as the light is important as both sides are all around us whether we like it or not. It is our choice which path we take. The more people choose a positive loving and compassion path the sooner it will manifest here." ~~ Michael Z. on completing the Transformation Course, Oct. 3, 2021
Another indicator of the value of these free courses is the donations given by course participants. We are happy to offer these courses free of charge, so those in challenging financial circumstances can reap the benefits. Yet what a gift that nearly half of those who complete a course choose to give a donation, and the average donation is over $200. 12 participants have contributed $1,000 or more to PEERS after completing a course. Two generous individuals have even donated over $10,000. We are overjoyed to receive such generosity in response to these empowering courses.
As mentioned above, it's been a stellar year for PEERS financially thanks to that incredibly generous contribution. 99% of our income came in the form of donations from generous supporters. The remaining 1% came from dividends on our savings. Eight individuals gave donations of $1,000 or more, including one for $6,000 and another for $5,000. Our total income was $451,852.
Our total expenses for 2021 were $131,109. The significant increase in expenses over recent years was largely due to compensating our executive director for seven years of receiving virtually no vacation or sick time. The PEERS board of directors agreed that with the financial abundance we now enjoy, the organization now could easily afford to do this.
About 86% of our expenses last year went to pay the one employee and three contractors of PEERS plus one who worked briefly with us. $1,250 went to a gentleman we hoped to hire, but who then backed out. $85,267 was paid to Executive Director Fred Burks in salary and back pay for sick and vacation time not taken (plus $6,759 in government taxes). Mark did an great job with our weekly news summaries, for which he was compensated a total of $15,915. Tech whiz Andrey was paid $2,006 for his invaluable help. Donald was paid $1,548 for his work on Google Ads. He continues to take advantage of $10,000 in free ads offered by Google to nonprofits. This has resulted in an impressive increase of over 360 visits a day this year. And our awesome new contractor Amber was paid $920 for her part in designing the new WantToKnow.info home page.
The remaining expenses were $3,197 for Internet and email expenses, $2,112 to PayPal and Stripe (Donorbox) for the 2.2% + $0.30 they take to process online donations, $577 in government taxes and fees, $601 for our payroll service, $925 for office supplies and newspaper and magazine subscriptions, and $165 in bank fees. Most of our donations to other nonprofits were made directly in cryptocurrency and so not entered in our books, but for two who could not receive cryptos, we cashed out cryptos and sent checks of $4,800 to each. We believe the total expenses of $131,109 is a small amount for the services we provide.
The statements at the above links were prepared without official audit of our books and records, though they have been carefully reviewed by Executive Director Fred Burks and were examined and certified by Treasurer John Lumiere-Wins. PEERS ended the year with liabilities of $1,706 resulting from payroll taxes not due until January 2022. All donations were unrestricted. Due to our major donation, we had a net gain for 2021 of $320,744. We are extremely grateful to our big donor and to all of our caring contributors who so generously supported us, especially in these challenging times.
"Your site is superlative for exactly the reasons and goals you cite. I wish we could contribute more. WantToKnow is an important light in this world, at a time it is most needed." ~~ Marcella C. Dec. 18, 2021
Transforming Our World Together With You
Our world is rapidly changing and transforming, especially in these COVID times. People around the globe are waking up and wanting to make a difference. And people all over are awakening to deeper spiritual realities and to our common humanity. Though at times it can be quite daunting and even depressing, in other ways it's an exciting time to be alive!
PEERS is at the forefront of a grand movement to transform our world into a more caring and loving place for all people to live. Thanks so much to all involved with PEERS for your invaluable support in this most noble endeavor. Even with all of the uncertainty ahead, we enter this new year of 2022 with full hope at the possibilities of ever greater transformation of our world through our great work and that of our supporters and so many others who are coming together for the betterment of all in our world.
"Today I realized that I had to divert my energy. I had begun to succumb to fear of the chaos in our world. Your site is my go-to site to find balance. I am now writing to you, fighting back streaming tears as I am reminded that ‘the world is a ride and the choice is between fear and love. Thank you!” ~~ Roxi, Aug. 17, 2021
PEERS 2021 Annual Report
Compiled and Written By
PEERS Executive Director
The PEERS empowerment network
"Dedicated to the greatest good of all who share our beautiful world"