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An afternoon tea dance sounds inviting, but how do you take the first steps? Nikki Burch leads the way


A RECIPE FOR W


hether you want to recognise grandparents as a valued part of your school community


or celebrate a special anniversary, an afternoon tea dance makes a wonderful event. Many organisations will be eager to support an activity that bridges the generations, so this is a good way to cut your teeth if you’re new to asking for donations of time, goods or services. It’s also worth noting that this year’s VE Day (8 May) is set to be a big occasion, with some local authorities allocating small grants (of around £250) to community organisations that plan to run a 75th anniversary celebration. So, how about giving your event a 1940s theme?


Key ingredients Venue. You’ll need a room that will allow enough space for dancing, as well as seating for guests and access to a kitchen for preparing food. Know what your capacity is and ask guests to reserve a place to help manage numbers. Atmosphere. If using your school hall (where strip lighting is the order of the day!), consider what can be done to create a warm, cosy ambiance. See ‘The icing on the cake’, right. Entertainment. Who will run the dancing? Leverage existing contacts where possible or research organisations that run ballroom-dancing classes nearby. You are giving them a great opportunity to promote their classes to a new audience, and perhaps they can invite their regular attendees along too. Food and refreshments. Decide what you will offer and who can provide this. Can your school canteen staff order and prepare everything? Or would a local supermarket be willing to donate bread and fillings, with volunteers making sandwiches before the doors open? Volunteers (children and adults). This is a fabulous volunteering opportunity for students, so put out an appeal for helpers and give a cut-off date for applications.


42 SPRING 2020 FundEd


Equipment needed n Tables and chairs n Mugs, plates and bowls n Cups/glasses for soft drinks n Tablecloths and napkins n Sandwiches, cakes, biscuits and crisps n Tea, coffee, milk, sugar and soft drinks n Lighting and music/compere (and PA system) n Cake stands, vases and flowers n Clothing rail and hangers n Name stickers for students n Cards and pens for taking drinks orders n Signage (for toilets, if required) n Menu cards for each table, featuring allergen information (optional) n Donation envelopes and feedback forms (optional)


SUCCESS


PHOTO: RUSSELL HARPER


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