Post written by: Erin Walcon
One of the requirements from our core funder, Arts Council England, is that we complete a Business Plan with particular targets for activity each year. Strangely, I’ve learned to love this task. What originally felt like a tick-box exercise to me has now become one of the most important things we do. There is a particular art in articulating our values (hopefully simply, clearly and concisely), and then thinking about how our activity plan directly speaks to those values.
To articulate, to ourselves, and to our community… how we will walk our talk.
To set measurable goals and to hold ourselves to them.
This year, it felt particularly potent and important to write.
I think a lot of organisations have had a values-check and a shake-up during the pandemic. Of course they have – in crisis comes a new clarity sometimes, and Doorstep is no exception to this. In writing our Manifesto for Change, in articulating the value of participatory arts, continuing to provide live delivery for the children and young people we worth with, without break, we have been reminded about what matters in this work. For me, writing this business plan post-Covid has been a resettling, a reminder of what we hold dear.
Our team are all freelance, flexible, part time people. We have been very lucky to have had sustained employment throughout the pandemic. Many freelancers have not been so lucky – the precarity of careers in the arts was further highlighted by the pandemic, and we know many people whose livelihoods and lifetime of work has been decimated by this crisis.
This makes us particularly cognizent of our responsibility to ensure that our work is having a direct impact, serving the community and making good use of the public funds we receive. There is a responsibility here.
So, friends, neighbours, families, children, teachers, audiences, participants… here it is.
You are part of Doorstep and our job is to serve you as best we can.
If you have time, could you have a look?
It’s a working document. It’s already evolved since we first wrote it in March 2021 and it will continue to evolve and change.
Please hold us accountable – please click on the link above and have a look. Please let us know your thoughts. And if you see a way that we could be linking up, or working in partnership, or reaching further to make real change… let us know.