Leadnow's people-powered funding model, 2016 update

Hi there,

Thanks for engaging and looking more deeply into how Leadnow funds our work. We take integrity and accountability seriously - so I’ll be happy to fill you in. My name is Marie-Marguerite Sabongui, and I’m honoured to be picking up the torch from Leadnow’s founding Board Chair, Adam Shedletzky, and serving this community as we continue to build the Canada we believe in.

We are already 9 months out from a turning point election and more than halfway through 2016. You don’t need me to tell you that we are now in a radically different political climate -- so what does that mean for how Leadnow funds and executes its work?

First some background: Leadnow was created in 2011 by a group of young people who cared about elevating the voices of Canadians across the country to fight together for a strong democracy, a fair economy, and a clean environment. Community is at the heart of Leadnow’s identity -- and today, hundreds of thousands of people work together to set our agenda, fund our work, and take action online and in face-to-face events to create lasting change.

Even with the Harper Conservatives defeated, thousands of people have donated what they can to push for progress in this political moment, and the overwhelming majority of our funding still comes from individuals, like you. Since the start of the year, we have received more than 8881 single donations through our crowdfunded campaigns. Most of those donations have been $10, $20, $50 - the average donation is $33. There are 2644 Leadnow community members who give a monthly donation. They fund our core operations, and that means we're free to do the work the Leadnow community wants us to do. We’re proud that all together, individual donations make up 75% of our funding.

The remaining 25% of our funding comes from vetted like-minded organizations and donors for specific campaigns that are aligned with our community’s top-ranked priorities. These include rising to the challenge of the international climate crisis, and fighting the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal. Less than 17% currently comes from international donors for international collaboration on some of the biggest challenges of our times, including on climate. For more details, you can read our financial statements for 2014 and 2015.

Just a few weeks ago, thousands of members of our community gave us vital feedback: we’re largely on the right track with our “support and push” approach to this new government, and increasingly, it will be critical to make our voices heard to ensure we make the most of this major opportunity to create lasting change that aligns with our community’s values.

Based on your input, we are creating big, ambitious campaign plans for the fall, with public consultations taking place nationally on each of our core issues - electoral reform, climate action and the TPP - and the government about to make major decisions in each area.

Your participation is more critical than ever in this new political climate because our work is far from over. Our small staff team relies on our community’s support to power our work together. Please contribute in whatever way you can. Every vote, voice, and dollar counts.

Marie-Marguerite Sabongui