Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Help Save EastEnders on WLIW

URGENT: Save EastEnders on WLIW21

Dear Easties,

WLIW’21s Laura Savini contacted me with some disturbing news for EastEnders fans. The on-air fundraising for EastEnders this year did not raise enough money for WLIW21 to buy another year of the series. We are $18,000 short of what is needed and the new contract must be signed on March 1. Given this shortfall coupled with already tight budgets, the program director cannot justify re-signing.

If we EastEnders fans cannot raise that money by February 28, EastEnders will no longer air on WLIW21. Laura was very clear that this is not any kind of a threat or bluff: It's just an economic reality for the station.

It is actually a testament to the relationship the EastEnders fan community has developed with WLIW21 over the last five years that they did not just cancel the show. Instead, Laura herself called me to let us know that the show is in trouble and is giving us the opportunity to reverse the decision. Please know our loyal viewership and involvement with WLIW21 has been a continual source of pride for the station.

But another reality is this: EastEnders is one of the most expensive shows that WLIW21 purchases, and the programming department simply does not have the funds for it… unless fans support it. And we have to support it every year.

So what can you give to secure another year of EastEnders? We are suggesting pledge levels of $60 and $100 because we need to raise the money quickly. Any pledge amount would help and be gratefully accepted!

There are three ways to donate…

You can pledge on WLIW's website via this link: Click here to donate online

OR- Call 800.767.2121

OR- Send a check made out to 'WLIW/Channel 21', but mail it to me at:

Save EastEnders
c/o D. Gilbert
P.O. Box 1106
Old Chelsea Station
New York, NY 10113

Just as with the drive I organized (in 2005), we will collect the checks and if we do NOT hit the goal, your checks will be returned to you -- if you enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

*Please note that donations made on the website or via the 800# will be added to the general WLIW21 Programming Fund if we do not hit the goal.

If you want to another year of EastEnders on WLIW, the time for you to act is NOW! If you have any questions, please email me any time:
E20Launderette at gmail . com


Debbie Gilbert

***BTW, raising $18,000 should be totally doable for EastEnders: that’s just 300 people pledging $60, or 180 people pledging $100. Together, we can do this!!


Anyone who sends in a check for this drive will be entered to win the Albert Square street sign pictured above. It is a plastic replica of the signs we see on the show (24x8 inches), not available in any stores and is autographed, 'Best Wishes, John Bardon'. He brought it to the station when he came to appear on our pledge night, five years ago, and the EastEnders fan who pledged for it at the time, has generously donated it back for us to use again to help keep EastEnders on the air.


Anonymous said...

I just gave $100 via the WLIW web site. I hope this helps. It would be such a shame to lose EastEnders. Good luck with the drive! TN

Anonymous said...

I just sent a check for $60.00. I love the show and would be heartbroken if it goes off the air. I have been watching since 1993. Losing the show would be like losing a family. Come on EastEnders fans lets keep this show alive! Don't let this one get away. Cheers!

Anonymous said...

donated $100 but in this economy looks like we will lose EE, need a miracle

E20 Launderette said...


No, we will NOT lose EE. We are VERY close to being able to announce that the drive to save it has succeeded. This drive has been a great example of what we can achieve when fans work hand-in-hand with our Public TV stations.

And after we do announce that we have succeeded, I hope all EastEnders fans will send thank you letters to WLIW!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Debbie for all you do and for teaching all of us how to do this the right way.


I remember you helpiong with the drive years ago. I sent you a check back then (it was before the Internet, I think), and I donated online this time (it was before I found this blog post. Thanks for your hard work to keep EE on the air. I've been watching since 1989!

E20 Launderette said...

@CONCERTCHICK: Yes, I organized the successful drive to save EastEnders 6 years ago. And this drive has been even better (& easier): We have raised the needed funds in half the time.

EastEnders will keep rocking on on WLIW well into 2012.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Debbie and all the Eastender fans for stepping up and supporting the best show on the Telly. I am soooo happy we did it!!! Yay

Anonymous said...

yeah for Eastenders!!
see ya at the brunch!!

E20 Launderette said...

"Anonymous said: yeah for Eastenders!!
see ya at the brunch!!"

If you'd like to come to the brunch, make sure you RSVP to me at the Launderette. Advance RSVP's are required.