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Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries. Image: Claudia Legge

Hannaa Hamdache on the Andrew Lloyd Webber Training Programme Fundraising Day

04 March 2016

Possibly the greatest part to an inspirational yet informative speech I have ever received. The day’s theme was fundraising, which has a tendency to make people sweat or be slightly bored. It’s become one of those things in the arts sector that is as necessary as doing your laundry weekly. Only after this Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation Training Programme session organised as part of the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries, did I understand the actuality of what fundraising can be: how it can be a fun experience and how the most important thing is engaging people with your creative project. It needs to come from the art.

The kittens need to get a bit less and we need to get a bit more.*

Peter Bazalgette

We were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to hear from a wealth of professionals from the arts sector, from Jonathan Reekie, the Director of the Somerset House Trust to Sir Peter Bazalgette, Chair of the Arts Council England. The jam packed day started with a whirlwind tour of the new Somerset House Studios that are the embodiment of a cultural value being placed over an immediate financial gain. (Something that is reassuring in our capitalist society.)

We continued onto Donmar Warehouse to hear from the rest of our speakers. We were given an Introduction to Fundraising, How to Write a Brilliant Case for Support as well as a panel discussion on My Top 3 Tips for Fundraising Success. So what were they? What was the best advice you received? How do you feel about fundraising now? Build relationships, know your stuff and timing. Understand the donor’s motives. Ready and much less nervous than before.

The team behind the Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries really did a great job putting together this informative and interesting day. After absorbing fundraising tips and tricks of the trade for the whole day, we were treated to a showing of Until the Lions by Akram Khan at the Roundhouse. This really solidified the message of the day: do good work and the rest will follow. Always come back to the art because that is what you are advocating and fundraising for.

These training sessions play an important role in allowing us to further our experience outside of our organisations and gain first-hand knowledge from other professionals in the sector. I’m very much looking forward to putting into practice what I learnt, at my job with Craftspace as their Creative Producer.

* The majority of the general public don’t realise that the arts are charitable organisations, and are deserving of donations, just as much as the kittens are.