65 Reasons Why We Don’t Do Charities! Oh yes, we had to mention this :
Once Upon A Time, We as Business Used to Give Alot in terms of GIVING BACK from hours of work to generating funds until the end of 2017……….
Here Is Why We Stopped From 2018 Onwards………!!!!
- Ever heard of American Dance Schools / Studios doing that ? NOPE ? Why do Indian Dance Schools have to do it then ? ALL they do is recitals and productions! Having dealt with so many collaborations from various walks of life, we have known this! We do lot ofother non profit projects now and then but fundraising is not our mainstream!
- Shortcuts in American Dance Schools ? Never heard of that. Why–asking for Indian Dance School to do it for sake of shows? How are you expecting them to GIVE – do fundrasiers when you have not made any efforts in giving them right students. So students have to stop learning and do shows?
- Tests/Trials & Errors : Everything is testing for people who do everything wrong so yeah – go ask them to do fundraiser. They can do anything including your endless experiments at the cost of young kids because it is experiment for them. It is not intellegence having fun! In institutionalized training centers, we cannot afford to do an experiments on students who are learning to dance or have just mastered skills or put up shows. There is no room for trials and errors when students come regularly once a week or for basic practices.
- Don’t mix innovations with trials/errors : To do innovations or research too-you need full knowledge to conduct experiments or the harm is dangerous.
- Mainstream Artists. They work 9 to 5 or 12 to 9pm. It is their job like other jobs regularly. When you do 9-5 jobs, do you do charities for that ? NOPE. You get paid by salary or contract or its hourly. And you do not do charties. Do you ? You do charities when it is your extra business!
- Full Time Artists. It is their job to do this work even if they do it for few hours as standard in week. Some devote their life to it! What have you given them when it comes to support financially that you are seeking donation from them? How is that fair ?
- Type of business. Average turnover of this business is anywhere from 12 to 16 hours to min 3months for baisc skills even student is dancer. Unless you are into choreography teaching-it is not possible to get the results that fast.
- More than 99% of dance schools prefer to be called as academies because of their lack of techniques or background and no techniques in focus/no training of teachers that are traceable.
- If teacher has not learned, what will teacher teach! Educational knowledge is very different than practical knowledge. Practical knowledge does not teach fundamentals. In schools, teachers are NOT allowed to teach without certification and there is a reason for it. There is a reason for sub-teacher and process! So for a student to learn a good piece in that time frame unless it is advance student-it is not possible to bring out results.
- With such a slow pace at beginners level to different levels of dances where students are still learning;charity events don’t happen even if you plan. As per school, students take their holidays. Yearly recitals bring funds to business and they are invested in infrastructure setup of students and growth of company. Focus is on learning. What are you thinking! Burning Out kids for the sake of events. No-thank You. Do you do that in proper schools ?
- Why should parents or dancers pay for charities after paying for fees : When you have degraded the field of institutionalized trainings asking artists everywhere to do FREE performances in the name of entertainment; why are you asking charities from them/using them again! Thats an abuse right there.
- Costs of Performance Makeup & Accessories : To perform, makeup to costumes-everything comes with a price. And they buy it! or they rent it. It is not free. Even makeup costs about 200$ per year on an average for most artists. Makeup is not reusable and it expires. This means they have to be discarded even when not used to fullest! Several such examples of other items that are used in dances! Just so you know. Are you giving that from govt with any perks that you are expecting them to GIVE ? What were you thinking ?
- Artist Maintenance : To maintain your body and health, there is lot of process that goes in it! From doing your training and other work out gimmicks. At times, taking extra trainings in fitness comes with price. For example, for several intense pieces of chhau and kalari, our owner had to go through 2months of vigourous training to give that effect. Are you paying for it ? do artists get those discounts there ? NOPE – they pay for it, they work for it, what are you giving that you are asking to GIVE. None of those fitness centers ever gave discounts on these. Our owner Hetal Nagaraj too trains herself regularly and refreshes her knowledge often-all of that is paid to various institutes from earnings. None local to Dallas Fortworth as there is nobody with that expertise here in entire USA but otherwise mostly from India-being birth country of our indian dances. Times, she has to travel to India too as requirement for local-residency-trainings for sometimes a week to 1month as it is required to be there. forcertain number of days! Who pays for it ? Not everything is possible online even in this pandemic situation after certain level of mastery. Are you considering that ? Did you ever think where that money comes from ? NOW, think!
- You should rather ask for charities from doctors, enginners, architects and such other 9 to 5 mainstream people since most of you think that performing arts is not a mainstream (haha). Do you think that you are giving platform or doing a favor ? In that case, artist can create on their own platform! They don’t need you for that! An artist looking for experience is different matter than an established artist.
- We are not choreography dance academy. We are training school with absolutely straight background and strictly curriculam based fun learning. This also means, people come to us to learn and have fun as recreational activity. They do not come here to target on fundraiser or an event and be done with it. We have had several batches who are not ready for our events sometimes. It is like that, what to do! See our choreography Based Non-profit Projects. Sure that is possibility but it depends on what we are getting otherwise it is waste of time : Coming Soon : Compilation of our projects! There is NO guarantee that our own school students will perform there. Outside students will be called seperately.
- What is the value you have given to institutionalized trainings : If you are somebody who has not valued what it is to take trainings and what goes behind the scenes, you will most likely be somebody who will run down artists who actually work for it. What is the value you are giving to people who work for it. Why are you sending your kids to college when everybody knows that education is not the only way to establish businesses or earn money. What have you valued about our training dance schools that you gave them business and thus, are expected to GIVE ?
- Earned it : Artist have earned it on their own and with their struggles — you were nowhere part of their journey. It is for theirs to keep and decide what they want to do with it. Lot of artists we have known over the years invest back in businesses or invest in their own further trainings as they do with legit business. Not just an activity. Why GIVE then. Give for what!
- Loans and Approvals : It is very interesting to see that lot of banks or even lenders don’t consider it as profession or profit bearing activity. So yeah, why ask performing artist to GIVE then. Go ask those businesses for whom you have given loan credits and approvals with a specified category.
- Why are you even considering artists to fund charity ? Go ask somebody else!
- Invest time and money : Ask for discounts at Indian Dance Schools and not at other places! You want cheap – works – go to passionate people who teach you dance of absolutely NO VALUE – by heart.
- What value it will give you-we all know. One more you-tube channel that you may possible land.
- You might as well ask for charity from them in that case. Choreography is done very fast! Who cares then.
- Parents pay : Parents pay fees of events, students pay fees, costumes are paid by them, tickets are bought by them, and yet only teacher gets the credit. Credit for what ? What did you give ? Nothing. You got paid for everything! Even profits were % or overcharged! Who paid-parents. Who should get the credits-Parents! Why only teacher?
- Tax : What did you give artists when they perform and spend hours in makeup, costume and then stage performance. Any Tax Free priveledges ? NO. Artist has to pay everything & still pay for tax and then give fundraiser – No, thank you.
- Being Grateful and so give : Grateful To What ? Artist dances, artist spends time to work for it, artist does makeup and spends for it, artist creates their own platform, artists pay for the advertisements without any perks from any govt and then they get their business. Everything they pay for it, what are you asking them to be grateful for?
- Did your institution or organization or govt. gave anything to them that they are really grateful for ?
- Something they have not worked for it. It is their reward. Some who go for those voting competitions actually ask their friends to get them votes/they beg for it pretty much! So what are you asking them to be grateful for.
- Gimmick of certain sect or group : Veteran so get it done likewise – label it. Fraternity and so get it done like that. Support even if you are supporting wrong person for the sake of it. Kill other businesses no matter how good they are because they choose to not get into it. What did you give as veteran? you are a paid veteran, govt pays you to do your job, what is free ? Nothing. Where is giving part? You pay fees to fraternities to support you – what is free? Nothing. Go to them then. They will generate those support system for you to GIVE.
- Goals Do Not Match : Goals of giving is different, goals of teaching are different. The moment you mix them-there are no results. Just damages either to students or everything else. There are ways to give to but this isn’t one.
- Storage : Average cost of storage for props to everything else is anywhere between 60$ to 150$ just by month. Are storage facilities giving any perks towards this that all of sudden in fundraising, it is asked to GIVE these for FREE. Why so ? Rather would prefer renting it out, by piece!
- Maintnance of Dance Accessories : Maintenance part of these props and costumes, average cost about 200$ per quaterly from sanitizing to keeping them up to date. What are you as organization or institution seeking this fundrasier giving priviledges to artists that they will use these for your events ? are you paying for the rentals of these props ? When given to rentals, they could earn a minimum of 25$ per costume or per prop or accessories. Why would they use it for your event-at no cost ?
- Prop Making, Buying and Logistics : Most props or costumes are not made from scratch in US or are to be bought from other countries due to limited resources or unvailable sources or sometimes cost to make that. If created here, it adds to high labor. Artist pays for it to get them delivered safely. Any priviledges for it from govt or any institutions or any kind of discounts from these organizations for it ? Nope. That is it then-don’t ask for it.
- An average number of hour to make 1 prop is anywhere from 2 hours to 4 hours. Under the leadership of Hetal Nagaraj, we teach that to our students and they make their props – it is theirs to decide what they want to do with it.
- Why GIVE ? They would rather put it on sale or keep it as their own keepsake or who cares, they will leave it as is in their store room for future uses. Why GIVE for free. What did you contribute to their share that you are asking for it.
- Venue Logistics To The Event : Loading and unloading costs are not free. It takes about 1 hour to load most shows’ props and students props or requirements. It takes labor to load & unload for it just one way. Then next is venue logistics! That adds to other hour. Per hour labor costs is 15$. What is FREE ?
- Stage Lights, Stage Setup and Planning : Hours of Planning. Average hours to be paid for this is $12.5 per hour and onwards. What are you as organization doing to take care of this ? What is FREE ? Nothing. Even Stage hours are calculated by slots by hr.
- Stage Manager and Prop Manager : Backstage mayhem, everything is charged. Who will do for FREE and how many times. We have get it done by paid services too, minimum 10, 12.5 to 15$. Volunteers always mess up the work as it is always first time for everything but for us-that show happens only once. So for me, i cannot afford to have interns all the time. Are you paying for it ?
- Costume Preps and Costume Manager : If you are outside India, more than 50% of parents are clueless. on how to wear and what. Inspite of videos given ahead of time. We have had costume manager in past who have helped parents or their teams go through the process. How much can intern do single handed and how many interns will you have backstage. Is it already chaos. Ask to GIVE – make it tax free for these services.
- Lesson Planning, Curriculam, Training Capsules/BenchMark & Notes : Hours of Planning. Average hours to be paid for this is anywhere from 15 to 30$. What is FREE ? These are not from youtube and such Freebies. Teachers have their own peers and gurus to pay too when getting these. Average time to upload videos itself is 15mins! If i were to hire somebody for this, they would charge me to create tutorials. Price. ofwhich is anywhere from 15$ to 50$ an hour. You cannot hire just anybody you want! Speciality matters.
- Music Compositions : While lot of these are available on-line on various music channels or streamings, which ones are legit or FULL ? About none. So what is next ? get it made or remake from it or recompose! Costs to that too. What happens when you follow half songs that as a newbie you are not aware-that half is posted ? You will continue the mistakes and teach students too to continue that (LOL, it is actually funny when that happens).
- Remakes & Recompositions : To compose and recompose the music dance pieces takes anywhere from minimum of 2 hours to 5 hours. Average cost if you seek expert help is anywhere from 15$ to 45$ an hour and you have to be with them! We make our music for several genres and with that, we know what it takes to recompose our own pieces from either original or from other composition to fit genre. Times we buy softwares and what not for it. As much as we absolutely love how we do it with results we get, What is FREE ? Nothing. Time is Money.
- Training to Students for Music : Even we instruct our students, if you do not have to or don’t have to recompose the work, don’t go for it. If you don’t know, you will make a mess out of it. Composing or re-composing those music files requires training too! You cannot go around mixing anything you want without knowing what goes in there. All that hours are time we spend. Time is money. What to GIVE ? It is really a joke in that case to GIVE when the compositions are to be made from scratch. Any benefits in that getting new compositions at no cost ? Nope. Even our teachers charge for those when we buy from them or other artists!
- Buying NEW Music / Compositions : While average costs of typical playlist is about 20$ for classical and folk piece collections from artists in original mp3, bollywood songs are available everywhere;some dvd with shipping costs. Big problem is when you are a dance school, even bollywood music doesn’t match the technique you want to reinforce and so we have re-compose or buy some music that is usually to be made and is not available for Free. You are not the only one owning it anyways if it is out there. A fresh piece of work to be made from scratch costs anywhere from 200$ and onwards. We have got them made and have known the drill.
- Music Rights are not FREE : Music rights costs money too. what are you asking artist to GIVE in that case. Shouldn’t you be willing to give the music FREE in that case? If you are user on Youtube, that monetization does not belong to you unless you take a full permission from the original creator. Go and ask for fundraisers to those who steal these and use it for their monetary benefits. They can GIVE because they have stolen and have nothing to own anyways. So they are okay – Giving what is NOT THEIRS to keep. We have not known any established artist doing that. None. Most of the items that are out there are either used extensively enough and original rights stay with owner.
- Practice Hours to put up show : Practice makes it perfect, once learned! Hours at times or at times days depending on model of practice sessions, dance form and dances. Not Free because instructor has to be present! Hourly cost of instructor is anywhere from 10$ to 30$ depending on level practiced or rehearsed. This is for in-house students. Out-bound students point number 64!
- Advertising Cost : Advertising Cost to an event and everything else in between to prepare the material. ALL asks for money. Even if its a fundraiser. Nobody in business till date gave a discount on that. Did you get that done free ? Are you saying, absolute no time was spend on it ? Word of Mouth sale is good but works in some cases. Surprisingly, our best customers and long lasting customers were the ones that came with my ads and videos! They see it and they came. Till date, it is history. Lot of times, our owner avoids even telling people about her business.
- Marketing Cost : Marketing cost of any event or dance school is just as time consuming as it is even for uploads! From posting ads, reaching out marketing agencies to going around and talking to businesses, texting, all of that costs time. Time is money! We have had parents do the work but yeah, that is not FREE.
- Printing Costs, if any : Printed Materials are still in fashion for out of the digital media world. It just looks pretty to hand out and there is cost to it! From preparing those to printing those. Any perks to artists for these events ? Nope. Least we can do is put as an expense!
- Venue Costs : 100s of $ and atleast advance booking of 1-2 years with deposit. Thank god that some cities do have non-profit event rates but still not alot and not enough! It is still large chunk of money about 700$ for. a decent event.
- Costs of Runner/Front Desk/Hall Supervisor : Part of paid package or it is seperate from city or freelancers. They are a blessing but blessing is not FREE. In that case, i would still prefer paid event and not fundraiser.
- Growth of Company and Infrastructure : Most artist that we know has goals of performing arts activities in giving better infrastructure to their students! Their goal is to give the finest trainings and roll out students who can handle institutionalized centers or create one or even university. NOT to do fundraisers!
- On-site Shoot & Video : All the time volunteers in that too…result – other 100s of passionate video and photographers and. it is always first time that somebody messesup.
- Photo & Portfolio of Artists : For those who know what that is, even for fun, why let it go to waste 🙂 Value !
- Certificates : For a fundraiser certificates and curriculam, what is the value ? Giving back, colleges don’t really ask to burn and no-value dances. Preparing for an event for the sake of it without training from right people-where does it get you ? No college ever asked you to burn out.
- Trophies & Medals : Value again! Who gets the main credit ? Fundraiser host – Not you as a student or participant.
- Event Lineup & Coordination : Hours of labor goes in it. Volunteers again, everybody’s first time and yet everybody is NOT trained. Either to handle event, either to handle people or even kids. Result-chaos and mess & you bet, some take liberty to yell and shout back stage-WOW. So much for giving at the cost of everything else. That’s not a crown worth to wear with that hate! Horrible.
- Social Media Setup and Announcements : All of these as well take up time, money and yet resources. Nothing is FREE even with Word of Mouth to Target right audience.
- Dance Targetted to Event Results : Again and Again I see this. As a business owner, how are you planning your curriculam on events ? shouldn’t it be other way round!
- Post Event Management : Event disengagement is anywhere from 1 hour to following days 4-6 hours. Yep, all that time you spend is money you spend. Are the Non.Profit NGO counting those for you ? Nope.
- Followup, Post Event Marketting : Followup to disengagement of event itself costs about 4 hours of work. Even when at Grace And Grooves we are so well organized that our wrap up time is far more less than average dance academies or events that we have seen, still it is 4 hours.
- Fundraising Contracts : Some Fundraising comes with contracts on funds or on other requirements. Seriously, i want to give but yeah there is contract for that. Most ridiculous part of it. Joke!
- Fundraising Period and Freelance : Time duration is average of 6 months on most fundraising or by event. If its by contract, we do it mostly by a year full of activities from start to finish. But otherwise,
- Freelance Artists and Fundraising : Hiring artists if we were to for additional highlights of the events will call for charges, or credits and other contracts are to be made depending on involvement of the artists or service providers.
- Credits and Freelance Contracts : They all come with a price, time and copyright as well as legal bindings! From limitations to freedom, none of it is FREE. For some credits, licenses are to be taken!
- Insurance and Fundraising : All the legit events asks for insurance and coverage waivers. Times, we have to use company insurance too and that is not FREE. This includes using it for Fundraising activities. The more you go commercial, insurance goes high! Risk 🙂
- Tickets Management & Packages : All of this is by paid services. How much a person owning business can or will choose to spend time on it. The strings of endless volunteerism, is always a first time with no trained people doing this work and handling it very badly!
- Sponsorship and Packages : To seek sponsorships and packages for the same, requires man power. tofollow up and trace as well as coordinate paperwork. With legit businesses, the cost goes high too. Yep-its all paid!
- On-site Live Sponsorships : Onsite live sponsorships comes with local contracts, insurance and other man power to set that up if there is product showcase. ALL of that costs not only the run time of the show but stage preps.
- Distribution of Sponsorships and Discounts : Distribution of sponsorships and discounts associated calls for somebody with expertise in field and that is not FREE. While there may be people doing it for FREE, it doesn’t usually happen so often. Following up for support itself starts at 15$ an hour. It is not front desk manager’s work and not an intern’s work either. This person has to understand not only performing arts for all the services offered but legal contracts and basic knowledge of submissions with legal matters. So if the experience doesn’t call for it in the resume or any knowledge associated to it-we cannot sit and teach you that!
- We are not an intern school-you may take up some other facility for that. We are proper school where students learn not only to dance but as they graduate, they learn other matters and businesses being part of school. You want to enjoy benefits, please join our programs. If you do not understand it, do as you are told. Can’t pay you extra for that.
- Applications for city approvals for outdoor events & insurance : Lot of fundraising events call for city approvals and insurance which sometimes are requested-seperately. To pull those plugs too costs money.
- Event setbacks and extras : All the event set backs, delays, and extra costs money and hours. Only prob wiht volunteer events, everything is blamed on students and parents for mistakes these volunteer do. Coz its first time all the time. So, yeah, we don’t want that. When we do our events, we train out people before stepping into these matters so that mistakes don’t happen.
- Special Event / Celebrity or Outside projects as part of fundraising : All special event and celebrity asks for % and costs that come with it is pretty good too! None of it is FREE.
- Post Event Photo/Video : Post event photo and video production comes with charges and even photographers don’t do it FREE.
- Practices : Fundraising practices take more time than regular production practices. Because people who join these on specific purpose for short term goals are not trained in most cases that we had. Coz well seasonsed dancers have usually danced with us on paid plans which means, we value them. We cannot cancel our classes to do these. These groups don’t pay our bills :). Classes do and even our paid dancers are our assets! Not all our students are up to do fundraising. Being proper school, most of them come to learn. They are not even there to showcase enough yet.
- Sticking to school curriculam : Same as above. For us doing proper recital or production itself is keeping up to the pace with once a week class and we do not want to charge families for tickets for seeing their own kids for a fundraiser! It is their right to see their kids perform at no cost.
And this list grows. We soon will reach 101 as other reasons get ready :).
We pay for advertisements that we give, we spend time for the ads we give. And we are wondering what is FREE.
We get business from work we do and give ads. We don’t push or even tell our parents to recommend us EVER-even in person. We earn it by our own means. And for now, we are thankful to our own teams for doing all that hard work. So we give back to them-we invest in them.
For community, sure, we will love to do that when we get that support or whatever you want to call it when it comes to business. Our business was always independent business and whatever we have earned is purely with skills and without any experiments or innovations on students or even sponsorships(where we know some dance schools sponsor event and get the wins :).
But yeah, if we have come this far without dependency (votes or likes or sponsorships), it is only because at some point we too have had our practical setbacks and trainings too on how to handle these set-backs. Besides, our business was also affected by those fake teachers (with no background/traceability/proof of trainings) and dirty politics (that other fake teachers play coz can’t win with transparency so yeah start that:).
We sure need money for our own graduates, students and growth to excel and go forward 😉
Our time – money – efforts is that precious with our mainstream work. When we see people who do main-stream work do fundrasiers in their main-stream work-sure we can think about it! May be when people understand how important it is to spend time and money with full traceability of dance and history, and support our business. We will then be grateful and thankful And thus give back!
ALL of that happened until 2018 January quite often.
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This post will be updated regularly as and when the developments surface! It is republished from our own original post of 2017!!
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