Dance of Asian America
Photo by James Wiseman, reefpix.org

May
04
2016

Dance Community Service

Posted by ASDA        Comments

Keeping a club together is the primary job of any leader.  Clubs provide members with tremendous value.  When asking members why they participate in their clubs, common answers have to do with the benefits of socializing, exercising, just plain fun, sharing what they love with others, trying something new, and a passion for performing.  These benefits are wonderful parts of dancers’ lives, and they wouldn't exist without a community of people to dance with.  So hats off to the club leaders and event organizers who make social dance happen!  Their hard work truly enriches our lives.

Now for the next challenge: how can you take this great thing to the next level?  You've already got the group together, so it’s time to start making the most of it.  Here are some ideas on how your club can do more for each other and help people in need.

Children’s Education

Dance is a valuable tool to help children lead positive, healthy lives.  Giving children the gift of dance is one of the most important things your club can do.  It is a gift that improves all aspects of a child’s life—mind, body, and soul.  Dance improves physical fitness, social skills, self-confidence, self-expression, cognitive development, and cultural appreciation.   Pass it on!

A dance educational program is fairly easy to facilitate.  First, get a group of teachers together who are willing to volunteer their time.  Next, run background checks on your teaching staff.  (This practice is absolutely mandatory.)   Offer to get your teachers training from an expert in children’s dance education (ask ASDA for recommendations).  Once the staff is ready to go, find childcare facilities, shelters, hospitals, and public venues that would like your services.  Common places are libraries, public parks, and after-school programs. 

Sometimes it can be difficult to find children to teach.  If there are any teens currently involved in your group, ask them if they’d like for you to come to their school or party to teach their classmates and friends. Put an advertisement on your website stating that teachers are available for children’s classes. 

Teaching children to dance is not only a huge benefit to them, but it’s also a way to help preserve your dance style.   Passing down your tradition through teaching is the only way to ensure the dance you love lives on.  Without young people learning your style, it could be lost forever.  In certain cases, teaching children can also be a money-maker. If your teaching services are in demand, you may charge teaching fees to pay instructors or as a way to raise funds for the program’s needs like sound equipment and training.  Nevertheless, the relationships your instructors build with their students will be payment enough.  Teaching dance is so rewarding for those who love to do it.

Fundraising for a Cause

Help raise money for a charity that is near and dear to your hearts.  Adopt a charity and include a donation to that charity in the price of your events and classes (for example:Tickets $25, $5 goes to support the Helping Hands Project).  For special events, plan a canned food drive or a toy drive.  Helping families in need is a wonderful way for your group to band together to make a difference in your community.

A Final Note on Service Programs

Sometimes running a club is enough work to keep one person completely occupied.  In this case, it’s best to find someone to help lead your new programs.  Give this person the support he or she needs to make your new programs successful.  He might just need a little encouragement, or he may need the club to give him authority, funding, endorsement, and volunteer power.  It really depends on the scope of the program.  Be sure everyone is on the same page, and be prepared to support this new endeavor in a way that the whole club can get behind and take pride in.


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