In The Spotlight With Gill Adams Every Child Campaign Manager At ARC
ARC have recently introduced ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’, it is a charitable giving scheme that aims to give every five year old child in Stockton the chance to experience their first trip to the theatre. ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’ is a two year pilot scheme, running until March 2019, and we are inviting local businesses and individuals to become supporters. The case for support is compelling because enabling young children to visit the theatre free of charge is a cost effective method of rewarding customer loyalty and a unique way for businesses to ‘give back’ to the community they serve.
Tell Us About Your Role In The Charity
I’m the Every Child Campaign Manager at ARC. I’m responsible for delivering the ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’ campaign so I talk to businesses and individuals and ask them if they would like to support the scheme and donate money to pay for the tickets. Each theatre ticket costs £10. Businesses are invited to donate at a level they are most comfortable with and whether they support a whole year group or a class of pupils - all supporters are rewarded, thanked and acknowledged through ARC’s marketing and social media platforms.
What Are The Biggest Challenges So Far?
Well, my role with ARC is part-time, 2 days per week, so I guess the biggest challenge is being able to ‘reach out to’ all the businesses in Stockton within the pilot scheme timeframe because, ideally, we’d like every company in the borough to become supporters of ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’. Not many people realise that ARC is actually a charity and it’s on that basis that ARC was awarded a grant from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation to set up and deliver ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’. That means that all the money raised through donations goes to pay for the theatre tickets for children. The tickets are allocated through primary schools and the first batch of donated tickets will enable children to see Pinocchio, ARC’s Christmas Show.
What Do You Hope To Achieve?
We aim to make sure every five year old in Stockton has their experience of theatre free of charge, through this scheme. ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’ responds to declining numbers of children going to Theatre. Stockton suffers high levels of economic deprivation and disengagement from arts and culture so ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’ aims to break down all barriers to access to the arts. All the better if local businesses and residents can help ARC to achieve that goal.
What Did You Want To Be When You Were At School?
Ha! It was the early sixties, all I ever wanted to do was go to Art School and learn how to make TV commercials! I went to a strict boarding school from the age of five and I distinctly remember my first school trip to the theatre. It was to the Theatre Royal in Newcastle to see ‘Sleeping Beauty’. I was completely mesmerised and that first experience of live theatre obviously had a lasting impression on me.
What Was Your First Job?
After I graduated from Sheffield School of Art & Design I worked in a tiny advertising studio, designing brochures for hotels until I got the chance to train as a film editor at Tyne Tees Television (back in the days when programmes were actually made on film!). I worked for Tyne Tees for 13 years, mostly in News production, and I loved every day of it. Since then I’ve worked in arts development all over the North East and Yorkshire.
What Job Would You Like To Have Other Than Your Own & Why?
I really enjoy the work I do, raising money to support the arts, and theatre in particular, is a real passion of mine. As well as working for ARC, I raise capital funds to support theatres in Newcastle and Leicester.
What Do You Love Most About Working In The North East?
The people! You can’t beat them for warmth, generosity and a huge helping of empathy.
What Do You Love Most About Living In The North East?
No matter where you live in the North East you are just minutes away from gorgeous countryside, bracing coastline and a wide variety of culture (including thought-provoking football)!
What Do You Do In Your Down Time Away From The Office?
I love live music and the North East is blessed with loads of opportunities to experience live music for free. So when I’m not working I’m at live music gigs, my favourite genre is 70’s rock.
What’s Your Number One Piece Of Advice For Anyone In Business Or Wanting To Start Up?
Please don’t forget your corporate social responsibility! Schemes such as ‘A Theatre Trip for Every Child’ are a fantastic way to reward the community that keeps you in business.
Gill’s policy was “Shy bairns get nowt”….never be afraid to ask!
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