We all (mostly) live within some sort of community. If we are lucky, we live in several intersecting communities. I have my artist community, a yoga community, a community of friends, a panda fan community, and probably a couple others that I can’t think of just now. So therefore, I consider myself very fortunate, despite what the current economy has done to the income of creative folks.
One of the most wonderful resources we have here on Whidbey Island (besides the fact that developers haven’t managed to pave the whole thing) is a resurgence of small farms. These are primarily organic, small family farms, selling their produce either at the local farmers markets or as CSA’s or both. I won’t go into the costs of bringing fresh, local organic food to market here and now. Let’s just say, that if you thought artists having a hard time making a living, it is nothing compared to what people who raise and sell food for us.
So, when my friends Vicky and Tom Brown decided to instigate a Kickstarter project to get some capital to make improvements to their dairy farm, I decided to give them the benefit of my experience in running a successful (Huzzah!) Kickstarter project. But even this has not (so far) been enough to put them over the top. Kickstarter is a crowd source funding platform. You submit your project idea to Kickstarter, set a funding goal, a time limit, and premium rewards for your backers. If you don’t reach your goal by the end of the time limit, none of your backers accounts are charged. (And you don’t get any funding)
So, with about 12 days to go, and only at about 40% of their goal, I thought, what more could I do to entice people to contribute my friend’s project? Quite frankly, I didn’t think about whether this was against the Kickstarter rules, and I really hope it isn’t, because I wouldn’t want to cause harm to this really worthy project. So, I posted in the comment section of their project, an offer to the first person who donated $1000 to their project, one of the original hand drawn cartoons that appear on my blog, The Panda Chronicles. So far, no one has claimed this fabulous prize. (go figure) But a really interesting thing happened. Other artists, farmers, and even a restaurant chef (who uses Little Brown Farm Cheese) have stepped up and offered some of their products to people who will support this project at some higher funding levels. Keep in mind, these folks get nothing in return, except some really incredible karma. Hell, I’m tearing up as I write this, and again, this is not my project.
You can read about who has offered what and how you can claim some of this really cool swag on The Little Brown Farm’s Kickstarter page:
Remember, They only NOW have 7 days left to fund this project. Could we have an internet viral moment here, where you repost this blog or send it to anyone you think might be willing to help? Remember, you don’t have to donate big to help. if 2400 people (+ or -) people donated just $5 to this project, they would be able to complete this phase of their farm projects and maybe reach a level of sustainability a little sooner (like before they burn out and spend all their money)
And here are some pandas!