Eau Claire’s Confluence Arts Center received a huge boost in its fundraising efforts with the announcement of a $1.5 million challenge grant to the project. The goal of the grant is to secure another $1.5 million in pledges and gifts by September 30. The resulting $3 million will allow for the Arts Center groundbreaking and construction to begin in September. The matching gift challenge was announced as part of the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council’s annual Jubilee Event at the Florian Gardens.
The $1.5 million challenge has been provided by a group of anonymous donors who want to ensure the successful completion of fundraising for the construction of the Confluence Arts Center. According to fundraising co-chairs Tom and Jill Barland, this commitment represents a significant final push in the fundraising from individuals and companies in the region. To date, the Arts Center fundraising has secured $12.5 million in gifts and pledges. The challenge grant and matching funds will add another $3 million to the project, which will generate nearly $16 million in private gifts for the construction of the Arts Center.
“We have received such tremendous support from so many who can see the future of our community through the construction of the Confluence Arts Center,” said Jill Barland. “This generous challenge match of $1.5 million is the final major endeavor to ensure we will indeed break ground in September. With the goal so close at hand, we believe there are people and companies who want to make this dream a reality and are ready to commit.”
The “Breaking New Ground” gift challenge will match every pledge and gift received by September 30, 2016. Donors will have until December 31, 2016, to make their first pledge payment. Pledges toward the Arts Center construction can extend over a period of up to five years. Every dollar will be matched up to $1.5 million, realizing a total of $3 million toward the Arts Center construction. Groundbreaking and construction will begin in mid-September with the facility opening anticipated by March 2018.
Gifts and pledges are being accepted by both the Eau Claire Community Foundation and the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Foundation. For details on how and where to give go to www.communityfortheconfluence.org or contact Susan Bornick, executive director of the Community Foundation at 715-552-3801, or Kimera Way, president of the UW-Eau Claire Foundation at 715-836-5180.
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