Last week we brought you our class ideas for our monthly theme. Lauren does a great job as Artistic Director of our sister company by keeping class ideas fresh and engaging. This week I wanted to share with you the other side of our monthly theme, and that is our community involvement. One thing that sets us apart is our commitment to our community. We’ve been blessed with so much, and therefore, find it’s crucial to give back.
I owned a previous business prior to starting Studio Go (our sister company that operates in Atlanta, Athens, Charleston, Charlotte, and Chattanooga here in the U.S) three years ago. When I was starting out, I knew one thing that was important to me moving forward was community service. I wanted to use Studio Go as a vehicle to make a difference outside of the classroom. Once Lauren came back on board (we taught together years ago) as Artistic Director. She and I sat down and hashed out ideas for our curriculum. One thing I really wanted to incorporate was character development. Lauren loved the idea, ran with it, and the rest is history. I remember exactly where we were when we first wrote down what each month was going to be.
February is a personal favorite of mine, because it is all about compassion and friendship. This is so important for these little dancers to learn. It’s also the month where we physically get out in the community and give back. This year we are so excited to partner with Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and a local retirement community. Our teachers will provide a mini lesson and do crafts with the children who are hospitalized at CHOA, and some of our preschool dancers will put on a performance for all of the residents at a local retirement community.
Both of these events are so successful and bring joy to both groups. More so, I think they bring joy to us. It is so eye-opening to see a child who is fighting for their life find the simple joy in movement and a fun craft. It puts things into perspective. Suddenly, your bad day seems not so bad at all. The residents at our retirement community adore seeing the little ones. It’s a bright spot in their week. After all, what is cuter than a 3 year-old in a tutu?
If you don’t have a community aspect in your studio, I highly recommend it. Here are some ideas on how to incorporate this at your studio:
- Food drive
- Donating used toys and clothes
- Partnering with a local charity (ex: Habitat for Humanity)
- Performing in a retirement community
- Hospital events
- GoFund Me for a family in need
- Providing a scholarship for an underprivileged dancer
- Volunteering at a homeless shelter during the holidays
- Writing letters to troops
- Offering free dance lessons to children who don’t have access to the arts
These are just a few examples. The list goes on. It doesn’t have to be grand. Remember that even the smallest acts teach children to be kind. I hope you find an example to carry on in your studio. Imagine if every studio had community efforts, the world really would be a better place.
Do you currently implement community events within your studio? If so, what are they?