We are happy to announce that we have received a 1:1 matching grant on our campaign for $25,000. This means that all of our contributions will go twice as far. Please consider making a contribution to help us get the Open Bench Project up and running.
Additionally... Everyone who makes contributions which total $100.00 or more will be invited to an early bird pre-buy membership event where we will be offering a 10% discount on yearly memberships. This represents a $250.00 value for full time members!
The Extension: We have been granted an extension to our campaign! As we had originally scheduled a short run campaign(ending May 12th), we have several checks still waiting to arrive and many friends who still wish to contribute we asked Indiegogo for an extension. The extension has been granted and they are allowing us to keep our campaign active until the end of May. We will still be offering our pre-sales as soon as we get that paperwork set up with our attorney. Stay tuned and keep on sharing! Thanks.
The Project: Building the Bench
What if everyone had access to the resources needed to make real their ideas? If they had workshop space, studio classes, materials to manipulate, tools to discover, and people to collaborate with?What if there were a makerspace in Portland, Maine that brought community together around making, designing, learning, prototyping, and sharing knowledge? With your help, there will be.
Welcome to the Open Bench Project, where makers of all kinds — young and old, amateur and professional, timid and confident — will work alongside each other to hone and learn new skills, dream, and play a role in the design and construction of their world. Where teens can learn to weld and adults can build a table and even the most jigsaw shy child can find the confidence to create.
My name is Jake Ryan, and I am spearheading this initiative to ensure that anyone with a curiosity or an idea has a safe place to come explore and experiment. The Open Bench Project will provide access to shared tools, opportunities for working across disciplines, wood and metal and electronic workshops, inter-generational learning, and a culture and climate that celebrates persistence, perseverance, and play.
I realized long ago that when we see an opportunity for change, it is important to believe that we can make that change. Whether making a table or a makerspace, I believe we all have the capacity to build something awesome.
Your contribution to this campaign will help open the doors to the Open Bench Project.
The People: A Community of MakersFor the past two years I have been talking to makers of all types. People who make for a living, hobbyists, people who wanted to start a makerspace, k-12 teachers and administrators, students, and many people who simply believed this would be a great idea. At some point during the last year I began referring to the “we” of this project.
The Open Bench Project concept has been shaped by each person I've met with. Their enthusiasm and engagement makes this project viable and locally relevant. To date, hundreds of people have shown support for the idea, whether meeting with me, spreading the word, or making campaign materials. Approximately 50 people have given over $20,000.00 worth of their time, materials, and financial contributions just for the early phase of the project.
The Campaign: Our Goal(s)The purpose of this indiegogo campaign is threefold:
- To demonstrate public support for the project and to test our ability to convey our mission
- To raise capital which we will use to off-set our expenses during the startup phase of the Project (while we ramp up our membership numbers)
- To demonstrate the viability of the project to future members, so that we can pre-sell memberships to the OBP
While a nominal portion of funding will be used to pay for miscellaneous administrative costs, most of it will be used to offset our lease costs during the first six months of operations. This will allow us to grow our members without running at a deficit during the initial months of the project, when revenue will be growing.
The Ask: We'd Love You to Donate……but if you can't, there are certainly other ways you can help. Please spread the word-- tell your friends, ask them to donate, ask them to tell their friends. This project has always been about building a community. Let's keep that rolling.
If you know someone who might be interested in supporting the OBP through a loan, or an earmarked grant please put us in touch with them. We are looking for corporate sponsors, community partners, and other means of securing capital.
Do you have some tools or equipment that you no longer use? We would gladly accept donated equipment or material, provided it is in safe condition.
Want to participate in the build-out? Let us know…we'll let you know when we're ready.