Pledge your allegiance to campus radio

U of M campus radio station to kick off fourth annual pledge drive

Photo by Jared McKetiak.

The fourth annual Pledge-O-Rama fundraiser for 101.5 UMFM is just around the corner and the beloved campus radio station is in need of donations to continue to provide its listeners with “hit-free” content and relevant talk radio.

UMFM has had the same operating budget since 1998 and as the costs of running the station increase, the lack of sufficient funds becomes problematic.

Pledge-O-Rama is a fundraiser that relies on listeners to contribute donations from Oct. 16 at 6:30 p.m. through Oct. 23 at 8 p.m.

Station manager Jared McKetiak reflected on how important the fundraiser is not only for UMFM, but also the community.

“I know that many of us were pretty apprehensive about asking our loyal listeners, friends, and family for their hard-earned money in that first year, but I think that what we’ve all come to realize is that UMFM is a valuable part of Winnipeg’s artistic fabric and that people, some who we know and many who we don’t, are more than happy to support a great cause,” said McKetiak.

“The week is hard to explain – it’s a mix of sleepless days and nights, lots of caffeine, and the best team of volunteers in town all banding together to raise money to keep producing the great radio that Winnipeg and beyond has come to know and love […] Any amount helps out, no matter how big or small.”

If your student budget prevents you from being able to donate money, you can still contribute to ensure Pledge-O-Rama is a success.

“If you want to come down and help answer phones during Pledge-O-Rama, drop us a line at and we’ll get you sorted out,” McKetiak told the Manitoban.

“If you’re on social media, an easy source of help is sharing our content,” added program director Michael Elves.

“Whether it’s the event page for the kick-off show, posts about special programming, photos of our merch, or anything else, take a few seconds to help spread the message.”

The fundraiser changes a bit every year and 2015 is sure to keep donors satisfied. Pledge-O-Rama’s kick-off show is scheduled for Oct. 15.

“We got pretty lucky with Ben Caplan, who’s in the midst of touring Canada on his excellent new record and was already slated to play the Good Will [Social Club],” said McKetiak.

“We added Heartbeat City and Astre, two of our favorite local acts and participants on this year’s Pledge-O-Rama CD, for what we think is an amazing night of music.”

Tickets for the kick-off event are $5 at the door with a minimum $25 donation to Pledge-O-Rama, or $12 otherwise.

Aside from the kick-off ticket discount, a variety of other incentives are included to encourage generosity to UMFM from discount cards that are redeemable at more than 40 local business to UMFM swag including mugs and t-shirts designed by local designer Tiff Bartel. Toques, scarves, sweatshirts, and the Transmissions from UMFM 101.5 compilation album will also be available depending on how much one donates to the station.

“I believe strongly in what we’re doing here at UMFM and all the great things we accomplish with listener support,” said Elves.

“The two takeaways that continue to blow me away each year are the amazing outpouring of support of our listeners each year and seeing volunteers from all walks of life band together in the common goal of raising money that is essential to UMFM’s continued survival,” added McKetiak.


Donations are accepted by phone from 6 a.m.-3 a.m. Donors can also pledge money in person at the UMFM station at Room 308 in University Centre (Monday to Friday between 10 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.) or online. Payment plans are available to contribute in installments and a variety of payment options make it easy to contribute.


For more information on Pledge-O-Rama, please visit