Salt Housing on State Street

Help us provide housing to Salt's most diverse student body in 40 years!
Salt Institute
Portland, Maine
United States
1 Team Member
This campaign is raising funds on behalf of Salt Inc, a verified nonprofit. The campaign does not necessarily reflect the views of the nonprofit or have any formal association with it. All contributions are considered unrestricted gifts and can't be specified for any particular purpose.


The Salt Institute for Documentary Studies is a non-profit school in Portland, Maine offering semester-long intensive programs in documentary writing, radio, photography, and new media. It’s been over 40 years since Salt was first founded, but the commitment to teaching hungry, adventuresome students how to become truthful, responsible, and creative documentarians has never wavered.

The Challenge

In recent years, housing in Portland has become scarcer and pricier. It’s now crucial for Salt to offer housing options to students who come to study in our programs. Offering student housing is important to us for three big reasons:

  1. It removes the obstacle faced by an increasingly diverse group of prospective students to finding temporary, affordable living situations while they attend Salt.

  2. It offers a way for students to fully integrate with and become a part of the Portland community.

  3. Eventually, owning housing in Portland may also become Salt’s endowment, ensuring that we can continue documenting people in Maine for years to come.

We currently own one student house on High Street, purchased in 2012. The house has been incredibly popular among students, providing housing for 10 Saltines each semester. But with an average of 20 to 30 students attending Salt each semester, our goal is to provide more housing.

Our Solution—And How You Can Help!

We found a beautiful home on State Street that is perfect for our students. Incredibly, our friends at the Quimby Family Foundation quickly secured the house for Salt’s use by purchasing it. Now, we have two years to pay them back, interest free.

We need to pay $250,000 in total for the house. But our first goal is to raise just 5% of the total—$12,500—with your help. We have a long way to go, and we are reaching out to YOU, our community, to help us get off the ground.

    Explore the House

    8 bedrooms (all with full-size beds)

    2.5 baths

    Fully furnished

    Spacious kitchen

    Architectural beauty of a 100+ year old building (4 non-working fireplaces)

    Password-protected Wifi

    Cable TV

    More About Us

    Our Core Educational Values

    1. Do work that makes your documentary hero’s jaw drop. The work has to be good. Really good. From the start ask the right questions, then go deeper and deeper. Look for the story within the story you are trying to tell. Every step of the way pursue review and critique by experts in the field, and be humble enough to know that there is always room for improvement. Try to grab the high bar, and once you think you have, stretch to grab the rung above it. Once the story is complete, the power of the narrative is in sharing it with a wider audience.

    2. Fully commit to every aspect of the process. Give it everything you have. Be unyielding in the pursuit of feedback and new perspectives. Seek to make mistakes and learn from them. When you least feel like pushing yourself, that’s when you need to the most.

    3. Healthy relationships are essential for doing our best work. Those with diverse backgrounds and differing perspectives enrich our lives and the stories we tell. Use respect and compassion as your guide. Establish boundaries that will challenge you and at times keep you safe. Know the difference. Most importantly, seek out the wisdom and experience of those around you.

    4. Be conscious and deliberate. Doing this work requires you to follow a set of ethical standards and guidelines and to be accountable for the choices you make. It begins with being honest and trustworthy with everyone. It continues by being clear about your intentions and consciously communicating them to others as you pursue your work.

    raised by 83 people in 1 month
    26% funded
    No time left
    Verified Nonprofit
    $12,500 USD goal
    Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
    Campaign Closed
    This campaign ended on August 23, 2014
    Select a Perk
    • $5USD
      Thank you!

      Thank you for your support!

      2 claimed
    • $10USD
      Thank You Tweet

      We’ll tweet a big "thank you" that includes the link to your website or portfolio.

      10 claimed
    • $15USD
      Buttons + Sticker

      Enjoy our radio, photography, and writing buttons and stickers.

      6 out of 50 claimed
      Estimated delivery: September 2014
    • $25USD

      Enjoy a beautiful poster from Salt semesters past.

      14 out of 20 claimed
      Estimated delivery: September 2014
    • $50USD

      Behold the beautiful images of Salt work past! Our Salt magazine is out of print, but we have a limited number to share with our supporters. We're excited to send you a set of 3 out-of-print magazines!

      17 out of 20 claimed
      Estimated delivery: September 2014
    • $500USD
      Gallery Rental

      We have a beautiful, bright, open gallery space that has been used in the past for everything from weddings to parties. As a thank you for your donation, we’re offering a free two-hour rental of the space for whatever you’d like! [The date and nature of the event must be approved by Salt’s director in advance. Perk must be redeemed before June 2015.]

      0 out of 4 claimed
    • $800USD
      Class Tuition

      Come experience one of our week-long 2015 summer courses such as radio, photography, multimedia and writing. May also be gifted as scholarship to a student in need.

      0 out of 3 claimed
    • $1,000USD
      Housing Discount

      Enjoy a 50% discount on housing while you spend a semester becoming a skilled documentarian! May also be gifted as scholarship to a student in need. [Perk must be redeemed in either Fall 2014 or Spring 2015 semester.]

      0 out of 4 claimed
    • $2,000USD
      Vacation at the House

      What better way for us to thank you than to share the house itself? This is a 4-day stay during Maine’s peak season in an 8-bedroom, recently renovated, beautiful home. Perfect for a family vacation or a reunion with alum or friends. This perk will also include giftcards to local restaurants! [The dates of the stay will be coordinated with Salt’s director in advance. Perk must be redeemed in August 2015.]

      0 out of 3 claimed
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