Drupal Community Raises $500,000 to Keep World's Leading Independent Open Source Content Management System Nonprofit Thriving

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In the Wake of DrupalCon Cancellation Due to Worldwide Pandemic, the Drupal Association launched #DrupalCares—and Exceeded Even Their Own Expectations

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Drupal is a free and open-source web content management framework used to create millions of websites.

I'm in awe of how quickly the Drupal community rallied to raise funds for the Drupal Association. With this fundraising campaign behind us, the Drupal Association can refocus on key initiatives such as the Drupal 9 launch next month.

The CDC, NIH and Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders—among many others—depend on the power of Drupal, the largest independent open source content management system, to keep their websites dynamic and secure. But the cancellation of the Drupal Association’s annual keystone fundraising event—originally scheduled for May 2020—put the nonprofit’s finances in jeopardy.

“COVID-19 has delivered a particularly hard economic hit to non-profits, and the Drupal Association (DA) is no exception,” says Heather Rocker, executive director of the DA. “When we made the decision to cancel DrupalCon North America 2020 for the safety of our attendees, the next question was how to recover those funds so we could continue operations for our community of millions around the world.”

Enter #DrupalCares, a global fundraiser conceived with the hopes of bridging the significant funding gap left as a result of the pandemic. While the campaign had a strong start, what really put the fundraising into overdrive was the #DrupalCares match challenge, a $100,000 matching grant for individual contributions funded by Drupal creator Dries Buytaert and his wife Vanessa. Then a coalition of Drupal businesses came together to match those contributions again—bringing the potential impact up to $300,000. These contributions, together with the contributions from Drupal service providers and end-users, accelerated the campaign dramatically.

As of today, May 11, 2020, #DrupalCares has raised $500,000, meeting its 60-day goal in just over 30 days. Nearly 150 businesses and organizations, along with over 2,000 individual donors and members, donated to reach the goal in record time.

"I'm in awe of how quickly the Drupal community rallied to raise funds for the Drupal Association,” said Dries Buytaert, founder of Drupal. “With this fundraising campaign behind us, the Drupal Association can refocus on key initiatives such as the Drupal 9 launch next month.

“DrupalCon has been an important reason for Drupal's success,” said Buytaert. “Even though we'll be gathering virtually this summer, I'm very excited that DrupalCon will live on. I'd like to thank everyone who helped us reach our goals—the Drupal community is stronger than ever."

While the nonprofit Drupal Association was impacted by COVID-19, the Drupal ecosystem remains strong. As Buytaert wrote in March, open source software seems to be recession-proof.

“Open Source has grown to be more secure, more flexible, and more stable than ever before,” said Buytaert. “Today, the benefits of Open Source are even more compelling than during past recessions.”

Open source contribution also provides an excellent opportunity for individuals to expand their skills—or even re-skill—during this time of record unemployment. Drupal has demonstrated once again that the power of community and the open source model make projects like Drupal the best possible investment in uncertain times.

In addition to the #DrupalCares campaign, the majority of original DrupalCon 2020 sponsors allowed the Association to retain their sponsorship dollars as the event prepares to shift to its first-ever virtual DrupalCon Global 2020.

“Like so many organizations, we had to pivot quickly on a major keystone event, but we also had to pivot quickly on a product launch, as we were planning to introduce Drupal 9, our first major software upgrade in almost five years, at DrupalCon,” says Rocker. “DrupalCon was originally scheduled to host approximately 3,000 attendees in May 2020 in Minneapolis, so we didn’t have time for a ‘wait and see’ approach. I’m grateful to a solid, creative Association staff and the extended leadership of our Drupal community who are willing to do whatever it takes to make this event a success.”

“Additionally, Drupal 9 is scheduled to launch on schedule in early June, which is a testament to how dedicated this community is to continuing to be trailblazers—even now, when a delay caused by these world events would have been no surprise,” said Rocker.

The #DrupalCares fundraising campaign remains active through May 31, 2020. To learn more about Drupal or make a donation, visit http://www.Drupal.org.

About Drupal and the Drupal Association
Drupal is the open source content management software behind millions of websites and applications, boasting a community of 46,000-plus developers and more than 1.3 million users on Drupal.org. The Drupal Association is the non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating the Drupal software project, fostering the community, and supporting its growth.

For more information contact Heather Rocker, heather@association.drupal.org

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Heather Rocker

Nicole Mabry
@drupalassoc
since: 02/2009
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