When Chicago Reader Writer Tracy Baim hurriedly gathered the members of the Chicago Independent Media Alliance (CIMA) to launch the month-long #SaveChicagoMedia marketing campaign in Could, the fundraising aim was a modest, however formidable, $40,000.
That will get us the complete quantity that foundations had pledged in matching funds and be a superb displaying for our freshman effort as a fundraising collective of 43 media shops. We had been all within the early throes of watching our promoting, occasion, and different income plummet at the same time as COVID-19 made the necessity for impartial information extra crucial and important.
Then the muse matching fund climbed to $60,000. And Tracy promised quite a few more and more embarrassing (to her) stunts if we raised sure quantities: to put on a costume for the primary time since senior promenade, to don heels, to dye her hair purple.
CIMA members started their very own protection of the marketing campaign, and different media began to concentrate, reaching our secondary aim of elevating consciousness concerning the dimension, scope, and variety of what we’ve been calling town’s impartial media ecosystem. CIMA consists of newspapers, radio stations, podcasts, e mail newsletters, web sites and extra from throughout town, protecting almost each group you possibly can think about in additional languages than I can rely.
We blew previous the $60,000 aim, then on the final day of our marketing campaign, Friday June 5, we began inching nearer to $80,000. Then $85,000. Practically 4 hours earlier than our 11:59 p.m. deadline we had been at $90,000. May we do it? Would we make it? Because the minutes ticked by, Tracy and I made a pact to pitch in to fill the hole between no matter we raised and the $100,000 mark.
However we didn’t flip the fundraising off at precisely 11:59 p.m., and some stragglers trickled in. Then a number of extra. And we had been soclose to $100,000 that we made one remaining push after the deadline and finally bought to an eye-popping $101,000 from greater than 1,000 particular person donors.
WE DID IT.
We’ve identified that remaining tally because the first week of June, however I child you not that it’s taken me this lengthy to do an replace as a result of a) the information turned much more heartbreaking and this Black lesbian simply want a break, y’all; and b) I’ve been REELING concerning the donations to Rebellious that put us within the fundraising lead.
As soon as the ultimate checks are lower, we’ll have raised almost $20,000 in direct and matching funds, and even typing that makes me tear up.
We’ve by no means—and I imply EVER—had that sort of cash, and I don’t even have phrases for a way grateful I’m. That cash represents a gamechanger for me, personally, and for my crew of probably the most devoted freelancers in Chicago (and past).
For me, it signifies that I received’t must fund Rebellious nearly fully myself. And for my freelancers, actual discuss, it means they’ll lastly receives a commission on time. And we’ll all be capable to carry you much more of the sort of tales we all know you care most about, that we have to inform to really feel much less alone on the earth, or might actually use as a break from the opposite information of the day.
Each penny donated means the world to me. Thanks.
Should you wanted to take a seat this fundraiser out, I perceive, and I admire that you just learn Rebellious, open our newsletters, click on on our adverts as a result of you understand that helps us, or textual content me about one thing you noticed right here.
Thanks for serving to to #SaveChicagoMedia. And thanks for all the time believing in us.
(Picture by Matthew Henry)
P.S.: Should you missed the fundraising deadline however would nonetheless wish to assist Rebellious, you possibly can all the time give to us here.