When Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor first approached me about designating Davis Media Access (DMA) as the beneficiary of the final Soup’s On fundraiser before he retires, I was gobsmacked. I’d volunteered at many Soup’s On events in the past and often wondered, what would we need to do be at that level?
If there is a gift from the pandemic for DMA, I believe it’s that we were the right organization with the right set of skills at the right time. During this crisis, DMA worked overtime to connect our communities virtually when we couldn’t do so in person.
Since 2004, there have been 17 Soup's On gatherings, over 6,000 soup eaters, hundreds of sponsors and donors, plus immeasurable awareness and more than $400,000 raised for local nonprofits. It’s been an amazing gift to nonprofits and the community at large.
After all was tallied, the April 21 event raised $62,000 for our community-based media and technology center. This money will help us bridge the gap brought about by increased staffing needs and operational/technology costs during the pandemic, coupled with loss of event income and other opportunities. We are most grateful.
Supervisor Saylor said, “DMA has done so much to amplify local voices, share information, and connect the people of our community for many years. Over the last two-plus years of pandemic-living, DMA has helped us all to pivot our communication models, stay informed, and learn new ways of doing things.
“This innovative work was done while DMA faced its own challenges to survive as an arts and culture organization. Through Soup's On, our community was able to support DMA, provide them with a hand up, and make sure they can continue their essential and important work into the future,” he added.
On behalf of DMA, we thank all the sponsors, volunteers, attendees, auction donors and participants, and the staff at the City of Davis Veterans Memorial Center. I’m most grateful to DMA’s board, staff, and the community of KDRT volunteers who all stepped up in myriad ways. A special thanks to DMA’s Fund Development Committee: Chair Craig Blomberg, and members Diane Crumley, Sara Eley (auction queen!), Pieter Pastoor, and Jeff Shaw, and to Don Shor at Redwood Barn Nursery for serving as a dropoff point.
Finally, I’ve known Don Saylor for many years, and can’t say enough about the work he and his Deputy Tara Thronson and Assistant Deputy Sara Simmons did on behalf of this event. It was an honor and a privilege to work with them. Thanks also to Davis Vice Mayor Lucas Frerichs for his emceeing duties, and to Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5, D) for speaking.
Please see below for the list of sponsors, donors and Yolo leaders, as well as previous beneficiaries. To learn more about the history and impact of this storied event, I hope you’ll check out this short video we produced (thanks to DMA staff Jeff Shaw and Bryce Parker for the collaboration). And for footage from this year's event, click here.
PS: If you missed the opportunity to support DMA through Soup's On, there's another chance to give--the 10th annual Big Day of Giving is coming up! On May 5, our community will rally together to support more than 700 nonprofits serving Yolo, Sacramento, El Dorado, and Placer Counties. You can donate to Davis Media Access on May 5 or any time before then by clicking here