‘Strictly’-style fundraising event raises £6,000 each for charity partners

‘Strictly’-style fundraising event raises £6,000 each for charity partners

By Helga Brandt
Joanne Howard


Helga Brandt and Joanne Howard from Pavilion Dance South West share how partnering with another charity has helped them achieve fundraising success.

About Business Come Dancing

Business Come Dancing is a 'Strictly'-style biannual fundraising event run in partnership by Pavilion Dance South West and Lewis-Manning Hospice. Featuring a dance competition pairing professional dancers with staff of local businesses, a gala dinner and after-show party, the event creates an annual income of currently up to £6,000 for each of the two charities.

The partners

Pavilion Dance South West (PDSW) is a regional dance development organisation operating across the South West of England with a venue - Pavilion Dance - in Bournemouth, one of only five purpose-built small-scale dance houses in England.

PDSW is currently an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation until 2019 and has committed investment from Bournemouth Borough Council until 2019. The organisation has worked hard over the last three years to reduce its reliance on public investment, but also recognises the need to further diversify its income streams to build resilience in the face of continuing pressure on public arts investment.

Lewis-Manning Hospice is a local charitable organisation, focusing on end-of-life care and care for patients with life-limiting conditions in Poole. They were looking for ways to further engage local businesses and individuals, and to cultivate these contacts into longer-term partnerships.

The challenge

When setting up a fundraising department in 2013, the challenge for PDSW was to raise funds into the organisation's core budget.

While PDSW has a successful history of nurturing solid partnerships within the dance industry, there was no previous history in cultivating local businesses and large parts of the local community are unaware of or unconvinced by the organisation's charitable status.

For Lewis-Manning there was a desire to add to their portfolio of events, to broaden the range of opportunities for their donor base and local business connections.

Both organisations wanted to create a relevant, sustainable and exciting fundraising opportunity for the local business community that not only brought with it a sense of achievement for participants but also had the potential of setting them on a continuing journey towards higher level donations.

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It Takes Two (PDF)

Resource type: Case studies | Published: 2017