Having supported Helen and her team at Move It Studios, we are delighted to be able to share with you their success as overall winner of the Social Responsibility Award at last night’s North Tyneside Business of The Year Awards 2015 .
Move It Studios is a dance, performance and fitness studio in the heart of Wallsend. The motivation for setting up the studio was, like many successful social enterprises, based on a life experience .
Helen explains “When I first set these studios up I was determined that any child, young person or adult who wishes to come to the studios will be given every opportunity to shine; to be the very best that they can be regardless of their background, ability, financial situation etc. I grew up with a Mum who on her own as a single parent did everything she could for my twin sister and myself, so I know first-hand the value of money and also how expensive extracurricular hobbies and activities could be. We wanted to dance but we encountered schools with an ‘exclusive’ air about them, seemingly determining the ability of a child before they even stepped foot in the studio. This is probably were my journey began, my intention on setting up my own business, leaving all the preconceptions at the door and throwing my studios open to any child who has the dream and enthusiasm to perform”.
The studios promote equal opportunity is every aspect of its work, dancers wear simple plain black attire for class, no expensive dancewear is required and a selection of spare low cost uniforms have been provided through fundraising to those who cannot afford them. There are no questions asked and no child feels any different in class, all children take their turn at the front and are praised for their hard work. No one is singled out for any reasons children are just encouraged to be the best version of themselves – no dancer is ‘the best’ each child is just as good as someone else.
Having come from a background of senior roles within HR and Recruitment, Helen says she “has never experienced anything like running a CiC. I live and breathe the studio and every waking (and sleeping!) moment I am buzzing with ideas of things we can do for the students. Making it a reality is hard work but there truly is nothing more rewarding than the feedback we get from our students who, without us, would not be doing what they are today. I cannot walk through the shops or down the high street without someone shouting ‘hello Miss Helen’”.
The studios has fast developed into a real hub in the community and the positive feedback from parents is emotional and overwhelming to read. Yet another great example of the amazing contribution Social Enterprises bring to our local communities.
For more information on Move It Studios contact Helen Telford on 07732051740