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The Willis Family

$22,613 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 227 people in 2 months
Created December 8, 2017

Thank you for caring enough to visit this site, and...

HAPPY NEW YEAR! May 2018 bring you the very best of life and love, and may we all experience peace inside and out!

Our dear friend Ken Rutkowski started this campaign for us shortly after our home and business was consumed by the Thomas Fire. Thank you Ken for your unwavering love and loyalty through all these years!
- Mikki and Nadia


“I Survived Because the Fire Inside Me Burned Brighter than the Fire Around Me.” - Joshua Graham.


OUR STORY:

8 years ago, we moved our production company and our beloved employees out of the hustle and bustle of Hollywood, to the quiet little valley known as Ojai CA., population 8000.

In an effort to reduce our monthly expenses and produce less environmental impact, we all let go of our apartments and houses and together rented one big home on a mountain top. We converted the garage into a sweet little soundstage and set up the third floor of the house as a post-production workspace. We had everything we needed to function as a mini movie studio and to fulfill our collective mission to use the power of film to elevate truth and hope.

Most importantly, the live-work configuration allowed us to be fully present in the lives of our two young sons. Our home swiftly became a laboratory for goodness, and a creative sanctuary for some of the world’s biggest hearts and minds. In an era plagued with problems, Elevate has become respected internationally for providing honest and unbiased solutions. Our videos have received more than 250 million views online. We have never once sold out, declining substantial funding offers to remain independent and true.

On the evening of December 5th, 2017, our dream home, studio and business were destroyed by the largest  fire in California's recorded history. Our community of filmmakers sacrificed their own belongings to rescue our clients' hard-drives. We escaped with only the clothes we were wearing. With the exception of a few items that were off property at the time, all of our production gear was destroyed. Unfortunately, our company was operating on an interim insurance policy that covered only a fraction of what was lost. In full transparency, we lost well over $250,000 in gear, but only $42,000 of it was covered by fire.

This is a call for community support!

During this time of global unrest we feel the urgent need to get back on the front line to create media that elevate's the human experience. To do so, we must raise at least $100,000 to replace our most necessary production equipment.

Here are the 2 best ways you can help:

1) Donate to this campaign. Any amount is greatly appreciated.

2) Share this campaign far and wide.


On behalf of our family, company and community,
we deeply appreciate your love and support.

Sincerely. Deeply. Gratefully.

Mikki and Nadia Willis
+ Read More
To everyone who contributed to our disaster relief...

Happy New Year! May 2018 bring you the very best of life and love, and may we all experience peace inside and out!

As I write this it’s been one month since the Thomas Fire consumed our house, our business, and everyTHING we owned. We literally escaped with only the clothes we were wearing. A few days after the fire I attended a disaster relief meeting in our little home town of Ojai. My roommate/teammate Keresey was with me. After the meeting she said something that I didn’t fully understand until later. She said, “As I watched people express their love and compassion to you, I felt like I was watching It’s a Wonderful Life.” With a lot on my mind, I simply nodded and smiled. It wasn’t until about a week later, when I was sobbing over the generosity and love that was pouring from all directions that I got what Keresey was saying. Something beautiful emerges from the human spirit when we are united by tragedy. It’s as though we suddenly remember what actually matters: Each other. Our connection. The love we give and receive.

This may sound odd, but if I had the power to go back in time and save our house, I wouldn’t. I would let it burn. I would let it burn because the value of this experience has been priceless. In no way am I trying to downplay the sadness that I and everyone who lived at 11085 Creek Rd. feels for the devastating loss of our community house and creative space, but there are way too many blessings to count to allow sadness to consume us. I have shed more tears in the past month than I have in my entire lifetime. But it’s not the sadness that fills my eyes... It’s gratitude.

My family and I have been literally overwhelmed by the tsunami of love that continues to flood our hearts. To everyone who has contributed to the rebuilding of our lives, please know that we are eternally grateful. You have awakened us to the power of love and the importance of community. Because of you this drama will have a happy ending. We are already making plans to rebuild in Ojai. We are also planning an annual fundraiser we’re calling Ojai Phoenix Festival to help rebuild the local economy. This would not be possible without your generosity.

To date we have raised one third of what is needed to get our crews back on the front line and in service to making our world a better place. We appreciate your continued support by sharing this campaign with others who may be moved to help.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you for your love and support!

Sincerely. Deeply. Gratefully.

Mikki, Nadia and The Elevate Family
Our Home: Before and After
+ Read More

$22,613 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 227 people in 2 months
Created December 8, 2017
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