Missoula Gives was a success!

Missoula Gives was a success!

Thank you to everyone who donated.

This year’s Tell Us Something fundraiser was a success. We haven’t hit our goal (yet), and there is still time to give if you haven’t already (or if you want to give some more).

The experience of Giving Day was much less stressful this year than previous years, ESPECIALLY last year when the donation platform failed for thousands of organizations across the country.

This year, Missoula Community Foundation worked with a new the donation platform provider, GiveGab. Their customer support was outstanding for organizations and for donors. They offered a custom URL to all participating organizations, making donating easier and the process faster.

So where does the money go? Tell Us Something operates on a shoestring budget. Our financial needs aren’t very sexy. Office equipment and supplies, software, recording equipment, marketing materials, utilities, and health insurance. One thing that many people might not know is that Tell Us Something does not pay me a salary, or even an hourly wage. I am a full-time volunteer. I am working to change that and make Tell Us Something sustainable, and every dollar counts, so thank you to everyone who gave.

Beyond the mundane costs listed above, one of the things I want to do with some of the donation money this year is some professional development. Storytelling workshop training specifically. I’d like to be able to begin offering storytelling workshops to people who are not necessarily signed up to share a story at a live Tell Us Something event.

“Stories are the currency of our time, helping people share their stories is like investing in future generations. Thank you for these great opportunities….”

— Sarah Elkins, Helena storyteller

The workshop that I require of all storytellers is offered to them free of charge in exchange for their sharing their story. There is a cost involved beyond time and knowledge in hosting these workshops, of course, namely food and drink. The workshop is still one of my favorite things about Tell Us Something.

Our goal for Missoula Gives this year was $5,000 because I had to select a number when setting up the giving page, and $5k is the average amount of grant money awarded to non-profits in Montana. My true goal was not a monetary goal at all, however. My goal was to recruit 50 NEW donors.

50 total donors gave to Tell Us Something during Missoula Gives and many of them have given to Tell Us Something before (Thank you!). I have not crunched the data to determine how many new donors showed their support during Missoula Gives. That is on the todolist.

“Tell Us Something is a shining example of a bootstrapping, dream-following, people-empowering, community-building entity. ”

— Grace Decker, audience member, storyteller

The first thing on the todo list, though, is to get the premiums and thank-yous out to donors.

Premiums? Yep! We have premiums this year. Some pretty good ones, too.

Rough Around the Edges beer koozies — stories can be a little rough, we all can be a little rough. Hell, Montana itself is a little rough around the edges. How about a beer koozie to take the edge off?

Stainless steel double walled pint cups – Share a story, Share a beer. These cups keep your beer cold from the moment you pour it from your locally filled craft brewery’s growler.

CD of Tell Us Something Radio, broadcast on MTPR and produced by Cherie Newman. Aired spring, 2016.

Tell Us Something hoodie! Printed by Zoo City Apparel, these hoodies lack the annoying drawstrings most hoodies have and feature “YOUR STORY MATTERS” emblazoned across the back.

2 reserved front-row seats for the remainder of the 2017 Tell Us Something season! Woot! Three Missoula events remain. get it!

Thanks again to everyone who donated this year. We can’t do this without your support.

The next live Tell Us Something event is June 20 at The Wilma. Tickets are on sale now.

Thanks again. Remember, your story matters.