PHOTOS COURTESY OF POWER2GIVE
we are too disconnected and that many communities and organizations are trying to address the same issues but are starting from scratch or recreating the wheel,” says Laura Belcher, national director of Power2Give. “The opportunity to create a national network of platform users that share information, best practices and lessons learned was appealing to me.” With two years and 16,900 donations under her belt,
Belcher has a lot to share. She and her colleagues have started to look at trends and data and communicate their findings via bi-weekly e-newsletters and daily social media posts related to crowdfunding, digital fundraising, storytelling and case studies. Unlike many crowdfunding sites, Power2Give is a nonprofit, and the gifts are tax-deductible donations. Its organizers work with local arts agencies to engage a community’s entire cultural sector rather than one organization at a time. That way, when donors visit Power2Give, they can see everything that’s going on in the local arts scene, not just the one they’re supporting. The platform can also track and administer matching grants to double individual gifts with corporate and foundation gifts. In Mecklenburg County, successful projects have included Dancing for Diversity, a partnership with the Latin American Women’s Association that promoted fitness, cultural understanding and self-confidence among local third-, fourth- and fifth-graders through Latino dance. Power2Give also allowed students in a Suzuki violin program to perform community outreach, including concerts for the homeless, the elderly and those with disabilities. But the Charlotte area is just the beginning. “We’re happy to explore how to bring crowdfunding for the arts and cultural sector to any community,” Belcher says. IA
CONFERENCE 2014 INSIDE ARTS 37
Inside Arts is the official magazine of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters.