From raptors and sea creatures to a new home for KDVS and more, projects offered Oct. 1-31 by student, faculty and staff teams on Crowdfund UC Davis serve to strengthen university programs and their positive community impact.
And in a year where COVID-19 and wildfires have impacted countless lives, Crowdfund UC Davis features a new program to relieve employee hardship. The Staff Emergency Fund will assist employees at the Davis and Sacramento campuses with urgent needs such as food, housing, utilities, transportation or evacuation-related expenses. Staff can apply for a quick, no-strings cash award of up to $1,000. The fund will be ready for applicants as soon as reserves hit $30,000.
Other Crowdfund projects addressing campus hardship include: Student Emergency Relief Aid, offering cash awards to students demonstrating dire needs not covered by other financial aid; “Future Healthcare Workers” awards for students who are undocumented or face other barriers while preparing for health care professions; and support for the Student Farm to increase distribution of food to people in need.
Meanwhile, KDVS is on the move now that Freeborn Hall, its home since 1967, is slated for demolition. Contributions will help facilitate relocation and fund audio equipment, a record library and other essentials for their new home.
And there are two projects for animal lovers. The California Raptor Center is developing a virtual curriculum to bring its educational programming directly to K-12 learners at home and in schools. And the Bodega Marine Laboratory seeks to improve equipment providing quality seawater to the many fish and invertebrates that live there, including white abalone and a purple sea urchin ranch.
A second round of projects
Crowdfund UC Davis launched earlier this year as a new fundraising effort from the Annual and Special Gifts Program, or ASGP, in Development and Alumni Relations. It is the first university-managed crowdfunding platform at UC Davis, and it will feature a lineup of projects each February and October.
ASGP Senior Director Michelle Poesy noted that other universities nationwide, including UC Berkeley and UCLA, have launched similar programs in recent years to help fund important student-led or research projects. “We wanted to offer the same opportunity to the UC Davis community to lead grassroots fundraising for these valuable programs,” she said.
The February debut lineup raised $48,000 for the 12 participating teams.
“On our second time out, it’s been wonderful to see how students, faculty and staff are embracing this new funding stream,” Poesy said. “It’s a great way for them to raise money for projects they’re excited about, and they’re starting to really plan for it.”
ASGP, in cooperation with Advancement Services, reviews applications, and also provides the platform, guidance and some publicity — but it’s up to project teams to fuel the marketing and networking that lead to success.
The current Crowdfund lineup runs Oct. 1-31. The application period for the February 2021 session opens November 2.