Consider the Arts for Your Next Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative
As Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) becomes more and more prevalent with larger companies like Target, Chase Bank, Disney World and Office Depot moving the needle in the community, it has encouraged many businesses large and small to consider doing the same. Often the food pantries, serving the homeless or anything the United Way or Habitat for Humanity does is top of mind. However, if you are passionate about the transformative power of the arts…consider looking to your nearest cultural arts organization as a way to give back.
Many cultural organizations such performing arts theaters, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens and museums, large and small are overlooked as an option for companies to donate their time to. The truth is, there are many volunteer opportunities at these organizations that are vital to our society. Not to mention, it is a wonderful way to see the funds donated to the organization in action. Here are a few examples.
Festivals: Often cultural organizations and performing arts centers have annual festivals that they can always use a few extra hands for.
Education: A cultural organization is a fabulous way to combine your love for arts and arts education. There is nothing like seeing children learn life lessons through the dance, a stage play, a musical or classical music concert. Additionally, many zoos, museums and gardens have an educational component to their organization that works closely with the community that you may be able to help with.
Concerts: Many cultural organizations offer free concerts to the community and may need a few extra hands to greet the crowds on occasion.
Graduations: Some cultural arts organizations host landmark events such as graduations. Witnessing first-hand families exploding in celebration when their loved one crosses the stage reminds you of the importance of the achievement…and this time, you had a part in it.
Keep in mind, no two organizations are alike so some may have varying opportunities, but at the end of the day, if it is a non-profit organization, they can use the help and will be glad to have it. So the next time you are looking for somewhere to volunteer, either as a group or it is your individual choice, check your local cultural arts organizations to inquire about what type of help they may need. If you aren’t sure what organizations are in your community, look for resources like the Arts and Business Council in your area that are well connected and can help you find a cultural organization that fits your passion. You never know the gem you may uncover that can leave your life transformed as well.
If you live in the Miami area, consider the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts for your next volunteer outing. Click here for more information on how your company can help transform our community through the performing arts.
Nicole R. Smith (Panamanian American author and podcaster) is the Volunteer and Internship Services Manager at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County. She joined the Arsht Center in 2012 as a Marketing Coordinator and remained in that role until she joined the Volunteer Services department in November of 2014. She is responsible for managing upwards of 400 volunteers and interns in all aspects of the business including recruiting, training, engagement and team building. She also leads the Center’s Nationally Nominated Internship Program which serves 13 departments and offers a life-changing immersive learning experience to approximately 20 interns per semester. In addition, she has been an Accountability Coach for the Center’s Apprenticeship Program and has worked as a mentor with the School-to-Work Big Brothers Big Sisters program for two years. in 2019, she was listed as one of WLRN’s “Local Women Who Inspire You” and was selected as one of Legacy Miami’s Most Prominent and Influential Black Women In Business and Industry of 2019 and joined the Board of the Arts and Business Council of Miami. In October 2020, she was awarded an Emerging Leader Award from Alive Impact Awards for Volunteer Engagement Professionals, and joined the Board of Al!ve and Ageless Chic magazine. Smith’s work has been featured in national publications and she speaks passionately about volunteer and internship engagement, recognition and diversity nationally and internationally on behalf of the Center.