This is a synopsis of a notable food security campaign produced for Project Worthmore. The campaign was a turning point for the organization causing it to stand out from the larger established organizations and put it on the map by communicating a powerful narrative that tied into its brand.
Watch YU MEH’s Story
Produced for Project Worthmore’s Food Security Campaign
“Patrick helped us develop a robust marketing and fundraising strategy, getting us to a place where we have been able to secure financial stability by creating a diverse stream of funding sources.”
Frank Anello, Founder & ED
For Project Worthmore the stories of refugee families are why the organization exists. Their primary work is to connect refugee stories with our own stories, welcome families, and create an integrated community in Colorado. From the beginning, it was apparent that most refugee families come from agricultural communities, and would thrive in opportunities where they could farm. But lots of energy and funding already went to teaching families English and helping them to navigate the federal system for food, medical, and housing benefits. The reality was that the organization was maxed out, but when an opportunity appeared to place refugees at DeLaney Farm it seemed like this was an opportunity that couldn’t be passed up. The problem was that $25,000 was needed to kick-start the effort.
Once we determined the scope of work, I began to do some research on food desert areas that overlapped with refugee housing in neighborhoods where Project Worthmore served. I worked with the ED to produce a campaign strategy and worked with a videographer to develop a story that would elevate the need and turn hearts and minds towards supporting the cause. We identified an individual, Yu Meh, who had found new life working on DeLaney Farm through a farm share. He was in his elder years and prior to the farm share he couldn’t find work and was having a hard time learning English. His story encapsulated “Why” more farm shares were important for the refugee community and ultimately “Why” a partnership with DeLaney Farm was a good idea. Once we developed the storyboard and captured the video I began to use stills from the video and neighborhood research that I compiled to develop campaign pages on the website. I used the USDA Web Mapping Tool to highlight food desert areas and used those map images to produce media showing the proximity of where Project Worthmore was located and the neighbors they were serving. I also used this media and copy for email campaigns, social media ads, and direct mail appeals. Project Worthmore at the time was a small nonprofit operating with less than a $250,000 annual budget. Their decision to invest and produce a great story made the organization stand out from the larger established organizations and put it on the map by communicating a strong vision, purpose statement, and a powerful narrative that tied the brand together.
This story and campaign raised over $25,000 in a 4 month period to secure farm shares and start a food share program. Then we used the story to raise over $53,000 in a year-end campaign to secure farm shares in partnership with DeLaney Farm and Denver Urban Gardens. Through those two campaigns, we raised $83,000. This was a pivotal moment in the growth of the organization. This campaign was a catalyst for creating momentum with support and engagement. Over a two-year period, we continued working to increase individual donations from $104,000 to $259,000.