|What Does It Take To Keep It Going?
Maintaining community support is perhaps the greatest challenge for keeping arts and performances programs alive. Although most program funding comes from local sources, identifying and generating new resources both within and outside your community is vital. You may be able to establish partnerships with community centers and other youth organizations. Through such partnerships, you may be able to form advisory boards or committees that will coordinate a set number of performances or displays each year.
Many arts and performances programs for youth operate in partnership with high schools, universities, youth organizations, churches, businesses, community theaters, and health agencies. Community-based arts agencies may be excellent sources of information and support. Investigate whether any organizations in your community would be interested in supporting a youth program that harnesses the power of artistic communication to prevent crime. Talk to teachers, local business owners, civic groups, local government agencies, and practicing artists to see if they would be willing to help.
Another way to maintain an arts and performances program is by sharing resources with other similar programs. For example, your members may be able to learn from other groups or train at their centers. Mentorship programs and performance exchanges help to create networks and enrich existing programs. Fostering communication and collaboration among centers also strengthens each program.