I met Brandon Deroche when I was a York newbie and he was a member of the local band The Underwater. Fast-forward several years and Deroche still occasionally checks back with his hometown. He recently emailed me to let me know that he’s working to send people into space.
Last summer, Deroche helped found the company Urgencynetwork.com, which leverages influencers like musicians, celebrities, athletes and brands to educate the public about the world’s biggest problems. The company’s recent campaign Ticket To Rise gives people the chance to go to space for supporting a cause of their choice.
Deroche wrote, “In short, we’ve partnered with VICE Media, around 35 nonprofits like Oxfam, Music For Relief, and David Lynch Foundation, and their influential supporters (Incubus, Daughtry, Linkin Park, The Glitch Mob and many more). We had a great press hit yesterday being featured on the homepage of Yahoo! … which raised $30k overnight.”
On the site, people donation an amount to a nonprofit of their choice and choose a reward based on that amount. Donors can then invite friends, view videos and connect on social media to be eligible for other prizes. Every $1 million the campaign raises will unlock a ticket to space. At least one winner will travel to the edge of space on the XCOR Lynx Mark II spacecraft and earn the astronaut title. The campaign runs for another 54 days — through mid August.