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One Community, One Love, One CKUA

Community Profiles

An informational message of thanks from CKUA’s CEO, Marc Carnes: 

You are never alone. And what’s more, you are amazing.

The dust has settled from an awe-inspiring, record-breaking spring fundraising campaign. We are humbled at the support and good wishes we received from you over the past four weeks. Our hearts are full to overflowing.

We entered this campaign sure of three things: we have a fantastic audience; we have a talented team; and everything was different.

So, we adjusted.

We looked to you, our listeners and donors, for guidance, as we progressed through four moving weeks. We heard from you about the role CKUA plays in providing familiarity and comfort, as you adjust to a new normal. You reminded us how vital it is to have friendly, local voices connecting us while we experience social isolation together. You told us music, arts, and culture matter – not just to keep us entertained, but to our collective health and wellbeing every day, and especially now. As momentum built through the campaign and the touching stories you shared with us filled the airwaves, we drew closer, becoming an even tighter CKUA community united around a common goal.

What we accomplished together is historic.

By the end of Sunday evening, long after the on-air campaign ended, and the momentum had slowed, the campaign total was $739,204, dwarfing our campaign goal of $650,000 and previous record of $692,000. By the end of April, donors continued to give online, with cheques also arriving in the mail. In total, more than 4805 of you have donated over $763,367.85 in support of proudly Made In Alberta radio!

To give you a sense of the magnitude of your accomplishment – this is the single biggest fundraising campaign since 1997 when the community rallied to raise $1M to bring CKUA back on air after being shut down. Your outpouring of support is even more incredible when you consider the personal and financial uncertainties so many are facing right now. You have overwhelmingly shown that CKUA matters, and I hope you know how much you matter to us too. You have reminded us that when we come together, despite the challenges around us, we can accomplish great and uplifting things. The only piece that was missing this time was working arm-in-arm with our wonderful volunteers, but we felt their love and support every step of the way.

On a personal note, I had a front-row seat to an incredible feat, and I want to acknowledge CKUA’s hosts and staff. You have the fortune of knowing our 30+ hosts from the time you spend with them each week, bringing joy, hope and company as we navigate the world around us. Supporting our on-air team is an equally caring and talented group of people working behind the scenes doing 30 different jobs to keep a seemingly simple, but highly complex province-wide institution running 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

As physical isolation protocols shifted daily in late March, CKUA staff and hosts reimagined building community, staying connected, and running a fundraising campaign. By learning and harnessing new technologies and software, mobile and video applications, they proceeded to break CKUA into 50+ pieces in real-time. In two weeks, we set up over 30 home offices, 17 studios in 3 countries, three provinces, and eight cities to keep the business running, and stay on the air and connected to you during these turbulent times. CKUA hosts and staff are members of the CKUA community as well – committed donors, fans and listeners alike. To see them respond the way they did, and how you, our listeners, did in kind, is a moment I will cherish for the rest of my life. Thank you.

So, what’s next?

First, we are going to catch our breath from the blistering pace of the past few weeks. And then, thanks to your generosity, we will turn our sights to our summer schedule, as your voice for music, arts, and culture in Alberta. Stay tuned to future newsletters about these items and many others. In the meantime, I thought I’d share some mind-boggling statistics from the past month:

  • $763,367.85 raised
  • 4805 donors
  • 1096 donors texted contributions, which was a new fundraising method for us
  • Donors from 434 communities in 11 countries and 4 continents
  • 34.08% donors from greater Calgary region, 31.90% donors from the greater Edmonton region, 21.37% donors from the rest of Alberta, 12.37% donors from other locations.

And the most important stat of all: One team, one community. Your CKUA community.

We are shouting from the (physically distanced) rooftops—and we hope you are too—about what we’ve been able to accomplish together.

On behalf of all of us at CKUA, thank you. So. Very. Much!
Marc