Why would you want to help with this project?
You will be participating in a project in Barre, Vermont that will provide a place to forge a continuity with special values from the past such as being a cooperative and working for social justice. Bread is the link! You will be helping to provide an educational center for students and the community and an agro-tourism site for visitors to attend workshops on wood fired baking, AND you’ll be able to come here to learn more about the area’s rich labor history:
- in 1900 more than 90% of Barre’s workers belonged to one of 15 local unions
- the bakery was the first in town to adopt the union label for its baked goods. You will also learn about the significant way in which the Italian community cared for each other through their emphasis on being a cooperative labor hall, store and bakery.
Just as the original intent of the Union Co-operative Store Bakery was to bake good bread and to solidify the Italian community’s strong union
representation by being a public advocate for fair labor practices, the Barre Historical Society continues to support fair labor practices and addresses issues of inequity in its programming. (http://oldlaborhall.org/)
You will be participating in this social goal by supporting youth doing the renovations as they learn construction skills alongside local craftsmen. (http://YouthBuild-ReSOURCEVT)
When completed, the bakery will become a culinary and historical educational center for students from such organizations as Capstone Community Action’s Community Kitchen Academy, high school students from the Barre Technical Center Bake Shop, as well as local bakers, other interested students, community members, visitors to the area and YOU!
We have chosen to rename the Union Cooperative Store Bakery, Rise Up Bakery, because it will once again rise up in honor of the Italian granite workers who volunteered to build it. The many hands lifting the bread in the logo stand for the cooperative way the granite workers functioned to build the bakery and to help each other in difficult times.
How do we know the project will succeed?
The Barre Historical Society has successfully renovated the Socialist Labor Party Hall in Barre, Vermont. It is a National Historic Landmark and on the National Register of Historic Places. It functions as a community center for many activities. The Historical Society will have the help of Carolyn Shapiro as Project Director for the bakery project. She has initiated, overseen and participated in community projects for over 40 years. (See profile)
Because there is no bakery with a wood fired oven in Barre, the culinary schools in the area would like to use the facility. We have talked with them about using the bakery for workshops. We have also talked with bakers about coming to Rise Up Bakery to give community workshops.
Our current goal is to raise $25,000………….
BUT The total budget is around $250,000. Please help us raise the money BEYOND our current goal by continuing to donate after $25,000! We will be able to use the kickstarter money as a match for grants that we will be writing.
Here are our long range financial goals:
A) Stage One: Kickstarter: ($25,000) summer 2015 re-roof, redo the windows, the porch
B) Stage Two: Grants ($200,000) Fall, spring,summer 2015,2016 floors, walls, plumbing, mechanical and electrical
C) Stage Three: Kickstarter or grants ($25,000) Fall, winter 2016-2017 wood fired oven, storage bins, kneading counter, mixer
Grand opening Summer of 2017
Because the building is on the National Register of Historic Places, we will be renovating the bakery in much of its original style. The bakery will look approximately like this inside. It will be simple, keeping the historic style of the 1913 bakery with the wood oven, work spaces, storage spaces and meeting tables.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk will be not raising the money we need to completely revitalize the building. We have contacted historical preservation organizations, foundations and know that a critical component is having a match for the funds we seek. The kickstarter campaign will give us some of our matching money. The ongoing financial challenge will be to have a line item in the budget for maintenance. Just as the Old Labor Hall maintains its building, the bakery will raise the necessary money through workshops and special events. The cost of maintenance will be low.
There will be a challenge in having a business plan that puts into action one of the goals of the bakery, to be collectively run. Here we will call on our skills that we've developed by working together to preserve the Old Labor Hall.
- (55 days)