ArtsFund’s Crowdfunding Platform Wraps after 3 Successful Years

Funding artist and venue costs for a deaf drama camp, providing a free workshop of jazz instruction for young female students, and providing materials and supplies for at-risk youth arts programs . . . these are just a few of the 228 projects that were made possible by ArtsFund’s regional arts crowdfunding initiative, power2give/PugetSound. September 30 marked the end of a successful 3 year run of the platform, which empowered arts organizations large and small to lead project-specific fundraising campaigns for facilities upgrades, additional programming, art supplies, and much more.

Throughout its course, the money raised through the platform had a palpable effect on the Puget Sound arts and cultural community. Betsey Brock of On the Boards commented, “Our power2give projects enabled over 48 emerging performances in our 2014, 2015, and 2016 NW New Works Festivals; and supported the filming of three performances for on ontheboards.tv. power2give [was] great for reaching people in your communications channels (ticket buyers and subscribers) and changing them into donors.”

Many other organizations have a similar story to tell. Missy Miller of Town Hall  Seattle remarked, “[power2give was] an amazing tool to give donors more options, more connection, more appreciation.” John Bradshaw of Seattle Shakespeare Company noted the platform’s ability to create a big impact in a short amount of time: “In 8 days, we raised $3,000 for new sets and costumes for our touring productions. Each year, these productions perform at more than 50 venues across the state and serve nearly 15,000 people, mostly students.”

From October 1 2013 to September 30 2016 power2give generated $1,224,849 in support of 228 projects from 100 multidisciplinary arts and cultural organizations throughout the Central Puget Sound. Over 4,700 donations were made by more than 3,600 individuals. power2give was particularly effective at attracting new donors for arts organizations. On average, 40% of the donors were first time donors to the organization whose project they were supporting, with some projects reaching up to 60% new donors.  All dollars donated to projects on the site were matched by ArtsFund’s matching funds, with ArtsFund providing a total of $548,824 matching dollars.

Aside from dollars raised, one of the most significant effects of the platform has been the relationships built through it, both with new donors and among participating organizations. power2give representatives from across the region’s 100 p2g groups attended yearly gatherings hosted by ArtsFund to share experiences and lessons learned through use of these platforms.  Many participants expressed appreciation for the opportunity to overlap with colleagues they may not have otherwise met. Though hosted entirely online, this digital platform had a unique way of creating interpersonal connections.

The success of the platform is in large part owed to ArtsFund’s sponsors. Raynier Institute & Foundation was the founding matching sponsor and inaugural lead partner of power2give/PugetSound. Additional matching funds were provided by: Amazon, The Bamford Foundation, The Estate of Jean Pringle Swanson, Glenn Kawasaki, Little Big Show (KEXP, STG & Starbucks), Neiman Marcus, Nancy Nordhoff, RD Merrill Co, Swedish Medical Center, Vijay and Sita Vashee, and a number of anonymous matching donors. Start-up and administrative sponsorship for power2give/PugetSound was provided by The Boeing Company.

For a complete list of participating organizations and to learn more, visit www.artsfund.org/p2g.