In the fall of 2016, a man named Charlie Elberson came into our lives.
He’s a well-known philanthropist in the Charlotte, NC community, and he took a liking to our little nonprofit. He generously donated funds in 2017 to help us define our strategic direction so our organization can grow to the levels we’ve dreamed about since ArtPop began.
Then, he took things one step further. He pledged a matching $40,000 grant, if we could get our act together and raise $40,000 ourselves.
And so began our #ArtPop40for40 campaign — an incredible, challenging and inspirational journey that came to an end on March 31, 2018. We raised $35,594 by the time midnight rolled around, and we were beyond grateful to all of you for that success. You heard our call for funds and you gave. You showed us you believe in what we do, that it matters to the communities where you live. And that propels us forward. It inspires us. We are putting art in your face, and you like that — a lot.
We were also beyond grateful to hear that Charlie was going to match what we raised, even though we didn’t hit our target. $71,000 is a lot to an organization like ours, and we knew our biggest plans could begin to take shape.
Then Charlie came back with another wonderful surprise: He’s not giving us $35,000. He’s giving us $40,000. In his own words, here’s why:
“A compelling vision, when matched with an inspired, hard-driving leader, is an almost-certain recipe for success. You’ve built an impressively effective organization in 14 markets, impacting local artists and their communities, all with one hand tied behind your back. It’s what’s enabled you to grow yourself into an independent and focused instrument for helping artists thrive. Even with all that to point to, it’s still like you’re just getting started. Looking ahead, your ability to grow and deepen your impact on artists and their communities will redefine success for ArtPop, and I have the privilege of being a participant in making it happen.”
We hope all of you find the Charlie in your lives — the person who will believe in you and push you forward and remind you that you can change the world. We can say firsthand that the impact is profound.
Thank You to Foundation for the Carolina’s and the Reemprise Fund. We are grateful.
Watch us, and you’ll see.