Well I didn't have extremely high hopes for my campaign. I have a small network of people (mostly online) who follow Charlie and would be interested in donating $10 or $20. I figured we'd slowly but surely reach our goal and I'd be building by September.
On a whim I contacted our local paper and asked them if they'd run a little story on Charlie and the campaign. It can't hurt to ask right? Well I received a call a few days later from a reporter who wanted to do a story on us! So last Tuesday we sat down with a reporter in our home and talked for maybe 45 minutes. I have to admit I was kind of nervous because I'd been warned that sometimes reporters twist things to brew controversy. But I went through with it because the reporter did seem genuine and sweet. The next day they sent a photographer out. A cute, young photographer who Charlie flirted with the whole time! She's such a character!
Then the very next day (Thursday) the paper came out and Charlie's story was on the FRONT PAGE! Holy cow! And that morning I started receiving e-mail after e-mail...the reporter was forwarding what she was getting to me. People wanting to send paper checks, or donate other things, or help in other ways. She is handling all of that, as I didn't want my address given out.
I'm floored by the response. I mean, I was already floored before the article came out because we were already getting donations, some of them quite large, from people I don't even know who must follow the blog. But when the article hit, the people of my community didn't hold back! We not only met our goal within the first 24 hours of the paper coming out, but we are continuing to receive donations! The reporter said she's done many stories like this over the years and has never seen this sort of response. She thinks it's partly because we aren't asking for the world, just a teeny bit of help, and also that what I'm doing is different. I'm not asking for money to buy things, but to build them. It must appeal to people.
I will be getting started this weekend on buying the supplies and maybe even building the first piece of equipment (I'm starting with the simplest piece because I'm still brainstorming the best way to make the other two). I will definitely be keeping the facebook page and the blog updated with pics, so check back in!
Here's a pic of the paper:
And the whole article.