Hello all! It's me, Hanna, the crazy festival lover behind FestivalBuzz. I'd like you to join me online in another venue: Facebook
The occasion is the Chase Community Giving grant drive. You've probably seen it before: you go on Facebook and vote for a charity.
Here's where I come in: I am on the board of DANCEWAVE, a Brooklyn-based dance center with an innovative teaching style that exposes students to top level professional choreographers and pre-professional dance training. Simply put, our student dancers are 100% amazing and hold their own well against even adult dance companies, as they did in August at the Downtown Dance Festival.
Dancewave gets amazing results on a shoestring budget. We are up against nonprofits with budgets up to $10 million dollars, but our budget is only $750,000. So a grant of $10,000 will go a long way! And to a very visible place: our new studio!
Dancewave is in the planning phase to build out a studio that we can actually fit our classes into. They've grown so big, we have to rent satellite spaces! And our staff has grown to bursting out of the tiny office in our storefront studio - 5 plus interns in a space meant to fit no more than four at a time. We've located a new space and will be signing the lease any day. We've obtained sufficient capital funds through our allies in New York City government.
But that money can only go to hard construction costs. It can't go to all the non-construction expenses that we're going to incur in the 18-24 months it's going to take to get this done. For one thing, we have to pay rent on the new space even while we can't use it! Doesn't seem fair, does it? Unfortunately if we want to use City funds (and we pretty much have to), that's what has to happen.
So, I'm hoping you see where your vote becomes VERY important. Nonprofits often run the problem of not being able to use program funds for general operating expenses. Dancewave is lucky in that we do take in some tuition funds which we can use for general operating expenses, but this period of capital growth is going to stretch us. In fact, it could bring us over the edge. This Chase grant would help us get through the most perilous time and let us keep serving the students who need us for support and who are blooming and growing into beautiful people as they dance with us.
I had a chance to sit down with our scholarship candidates just this week, and it struck me what a bunch of smart, funny, hopeful and VERY talented people they are. I want to create a more permanent dance center for them, and also for all the Brooklyners who will be able to use the space for recreation, as another performance or rehearsal space, or just want that particular block of Fourth Avenue to be beautiful.
So, please join me in voting this period for Dancewave on Facebook. In two minutes you can be helping to support Brooklyn small nonprofits, education in the arts, and over 1000 young people who are served in our companies, studio classes and afterschool programs.
When: NOW through September 19, 2012