6 January 2014back

Creative Internships Blog Week 10

Ciara McCafferty, Prime Cut Productions

‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year’ and that means just one thing....funding deadlines.

Here at Prime Cut everyone in the office is ready for a well deserved Christmas break after one of their most hectic years yet. However, in the arts sector work doesn’t just stop because a successful project is coming to an end, preparation has to start for the next project in order for it to be just as successful. And so before any Christmas dinner was touched we had a host of funding applications that needed to be prepared. The funding applications that we were entering ranged from project funding to annual funding and thus the amounts being applied for drastically differed. It was fascinating to be involved in the process for such a range of applications in such a short period of time. This showed the importance of knowing your proposed project inside out as it is easy to get confused when so many applications are on the go. To me this is the test of a strong proposal; when you have proof read and re-read so many applications on the same project and you are still as excited to get stuck in as when you first started, then you know it is going to be something special. Thankfully we had Christmas FM constantly playing in the office to ensure that stress levels were kept to a minimum.

The last few weeks also brought a host of the wonderful Arts & Business NI master classes and workshops. At the ‘Innovation in Fundraising’ master class we were lucky enough to hear from Ken Burnett and get introduced to his ten golden nuggets of fundraising. I was especially struck by his passion, and his belief of the importance of an emotional connection when raising funds. Donors are entering into a relationship with your organisation because of your enthusiasm for a cause and how they can make a difference. This relationship is special and so should never be taken for granted.

Another workshop I found particularly beneficial was ‘Getting the most from your board’. I was especially looking forward to this one as I hope in the near future to be putting together a board for my own company. This was a great experience as we were joined by professionals from a range of backgrounds such as; accountancy and financial management, who are all hoping to shortly join arts boards through the Board Bank scheme at Arts & Business NI. This workshop enabled everyone present to share their differing perspectives on a number of topics that boards regularly face.

2013 may be drawing to a close but if the past three months are anything to go by then I hope 2014 will bring as many learning opportunities, successful funding applications and delicious networking lunches!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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