We are Carleton University’s competitive dance team, Ravens Dance Pak. We are a competitive club that is primarily student funded. Our initiative is to raise money in order to help fund our team. By producing donations, we are helping members with team expenses as dance can an expensive sport. We require costumes, travel, hotels, studio space, and entry fees for competition at the very minimum in order to run successfully. Our goal is to raise money that can be put into our team’s future and help the members currently, but also in the years to come. Being self-funded means that members fund the team, as well as any fundraisers we hold. By donating to our team, you are helping us establish our team’s future and allowing members to explore their passions throughout their time at Carleton University.

The Background

Although it may seem like donations are solely for the team, the importance of this fundraiser is much larger than that. An important cause to our team is the mental health of students. Practicing an art is an important outlet for mental health and is proven by research to help the mental well-being of participants. It is fairly well known that many University students may struggle from stress and anxiety as a result of wanting to produce high marks. Ongoing stress and anxiety can have negative consequences on the overall health of students. In order to combat this, dance allows students to exercise after working on their classes all day, while also being provided with a creative output. Exercising releases endorphins to our brains and bodies which will combat the impact of stress and clear the mind of worries. Practicing creativity also produces serotonin and dopamine to the brain to combat the stress hormone cortisol. All of these factors are extremely important to the overall health of students. Without a creative and athletic output, students are at risk of developing other chronic ailments as a result of elevated stress hormone levels. We hope that you will help us fund our team so we can continue to provide an important and healthy outlet to students at Carleton University in order to continue helping the mental health of those who choose to participate.

The Rollout

The funding for our team is allocated in various different ways, the first being studio space. In order to prepare for competitions, we hold several rehearsals per week to maintain technique and choreograph our routines. This requires studio space large enough to safely hold our team during Covid-19. In order to obtain this studio space, we must rent the space and be able to afford the fees. The second main use of our funding is costuming. Costuming is a large part of competitive dance. Costumes are the equivalent to a uniform worn during a game, but there is a different costume for each routine. By donating to our team, we will be able to afford better quality costumes, which boosts confidence as it allows all members to feel comfortable on stage. Better quality costuming also helps the appearance of professionalism, while also increasing the marks we receive from judges. Another major allocation is for transportation to and from competitions. As we are a travelling team our competitions are held in or near the greater Toronto area, often Mississauga and Guelph. Competitions are held on separate weekends meaning we must commute on several different occasions. Donations allow us to afford gas money for travel, as well as helping us pay for the hotels as competitions are weekend long events. On top of these, funding also helps us cover our entries fees for competition and several other behind the scenes efforts that help the team run smoothly.

The Impact

To all of us dance is much more than just a competitive sport. Being part of this team is a chance for us to continue our passion for dance after our careers as studio dancers have come to an end. For many of us dance has been a lifelong commitment that has become an ingrained part of our lives. By being able to run this team it also provides an emotional outlet for dancers. Dance relieves stress and anxiety that students may be feeling from their classes or other outside factors. It is important to our mental health to be able to have this outlet. Normally we would also provide this outlet to anyone who would like to join our drop-in classes, but unfortunately due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are unable to hold these classes at this time. Funding from previous years has been significant throughout the pandemic. It has allowed us to continue dance as we were able to afford the safety measures required to practice in person. Overall, Ravens Dance Pak is imperative for mental health and has helped many of us make it through the pandemic thus far in a healthy way.

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Donation Total: $25.00