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News & Press: ICA News

Crowdfunding: Helping ICA Succeed with Your Support

Friday, June 7, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Nina Winn
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This year ICA has a new approach to fundraising. We have worked hard on creating programs that

are self-sustaining; however most of our programs are still relatively young, and have a few years until they will be able to run without external support. In the mean time, the ICA's programming staff is taking charge of making sure each program is financially viable.

This new model has shown an incredible amount of success this past month. Early in May, ICA's AC77 team submitted a proposal to support the AC77 website, and was selected as one of the five top applicants for the Delta 'Emerging Leaders' Boost Grant. All five finalists were given an opportunity to make their pitch in person, at the Boost Event on May 8th, and attendees at the event were allowed to vote for only two of the five finalists. We are proud to say ICA was one of the two winners, and received $3,500 towards revamping the AC77 website(Pictured Right: Nina Winn, Seva Gandhi, Caitlin Sarro accepting the Delta Emerging Leaders Boost Grant on behalf of the ICA, pictured with the other winner, Alex Poltorak from the Urban Canopy Project.)


In the meantime, ICA Greenrise team applied to the Ford Community Green Grant to assist with the implementation of a rooftop farm on top of the second floor roof of ICA Greenrise. Again, ICA was selected as one of the five finalists, (from over fifty-five applicants!) and supporters were allowed to vote online or at the two-day Chicago Green Festival. We asked for support in the form of votes from ToP Trainers, individuals on ICA listservs, building tenants and residents, and friends and family. We are proud to announce on May 19th, ICA was selected as the winner, receiving $5,000 grant to renew our rooftop! Seventh floor resident Joseph Taylor is excited to be the lead implementer of the farm, and has already taken incredible steps to include members from other organizations from within the building in the planning and implementation of the farm.

In addition to these small but important crowdfunding victories, ICA received notice that the GreenRise Solar Project has been awarded a $359,000 grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation to install renewable solar energy panels on our rooftop - (just a stones throw away from the up and coming rooftop farm!) The GreenRise building is increasingly a high profile embodiment of "green culture" and an excellent complement to our Accelerate 77 community sustainability work.


As a team, we are very clear that none of our victories would have been possible without the overwhelming support of all our community members and advocates. We thank you, and now have tangible proof that our community supports and buoys us when we need them to the most. 

Briatta Bell, Lesley Showers and Joseph Taylor accepting

the grant on behalf of the ICA from the Ford Community Foundation