IMC Capital Campaign for a Permanent Home

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The Urbana Champaign Independent Media Center recently kicked off its Capital Campaign to raise funds to purchase a permanent home for its independent media and arts programs. Since its founding in the fall of 2000, the UCIMC has outgrown our original meeting space, a large living room, where it was decided that a public space was a necessity for our vision of the IMC as a community center. In January 2001, the UCIMC opened in its present location at 218 West Main Street in downtown Urbana. Just over a year ago, the Back Room at the IMC was opened, followed by the remodeled Gallery at the New Year, to provide space for performing arts and to accommodate the growing demands for accessible, artist-friendly community space. Of course, we continue with our original mission, putting media production resources in the hands of the community via the Public i, our website (, radio and video production facilities, and programs that utilize WEFT 90.1FM and cable access to serve our diverse community. The IMC is a financial success, bringing in enough money every month to sustain the many programs mentioned above.
As IMC membership has continued to grow, stabilizing IMC finances through the purchase of our own space has become an important goal in order to build financial equity and independence to better serve the IMC membership along with the community. We have not settled on a new home, yet, although there are a number of properties that could serve our ongoing programs and give us space for the expansive and explosive growth that the IMC is undergoing even as this is written.
A space of this size doesn’t come cheap. We would like to at least double the space currently available, a requirement that implies an investment of between $250,000 and $400,000. Thus we have set a goal of raising $100,000 by December 31, 2003 to provide a twenty percent down payment, along with a reserve fund for needed modifications and repairs to ready the building for use as an IMC.
Our idea of a permanent home for the IMC has captured the imagination of our membership, inspiring initial donations of $7,000 from them, along with another $6,000 in pledges. A generous and visionary anonymous donor raised the ante by making a grant of $20,000, to be used for matching funds. With $27,000 in our Capital Campaign Fund, Founding Funder Zachary Miller just added another $5,000 pledge, bringing this crucial fundraising campaign nearly one-third of the way to our goal of $100,000 on deposit in our Capital Campaign Fund by December 31. To this point, the Capital Campaign has operated informally, but an IMC Capital Campaign Committee is now putting into action a plan for systematic outreach to the community to raise the remaining funds needed to achieve our goal of a permanent home for the UCIMC.
If you would like to make a donation to the UC IMC Capital Campaign, know of someone who might be interested in donating, or want to get involved in the Campaign, please send an email to Sascha Meinrath at, or call him at 344-0183. All donations identified as Capital Campaign Funds are dedicated solely to the purpose of purchasing and improving property for a permanent home for the UCIMC. The UCIMC is a 501c3 non-profit and all donations are tax-deductible.

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