At Propeller, giving back to the community is a meaningful part of our culture. Through our Uplift program, we leverage the business acumen of our consultants to support the needs of nonprofit organizations. Our goal is to make a lasting impact and uplift nonprofit partners through strategy, professional development, or direct service.
View our other featured community partners in the Uplift Community Partner Series.
As we approach the end of the year, a time many of us focus on giving, we reached out to some of our Uplift partners to learn more about their mission, and what seasonal giving means to them. Today we’re featuring our conversation with Hillary Harding, development director, at Cleo Parker Robinson Dance.
Cleo Parker Robinson Dance is an international performing arts and educational institution rooted in African American traditions located in Denver, Colorado.
Q: Can you tell us about the mission of Cleo Parker Robinson Dance and your role within the organization?
Cleo Parker Robinson Dance is dedicated to excellence in providing cross-cultural instruction, performances and enrichment programs empowering all our communities by cultivating the healthy mind, body and spirit development for intergenerational students, artists and audiences.
My name is Hillary Harding and I am the development director at CPRD. I have been with the company for over 5 years now.
Q: Where can the community see your team’s work in action?
Throughout Denver and some online! If you visit our webpage you can find out more about our shows. We are back performing in person but also looking to continue to live stream and pre-record some of our work.
Q. We’d love to hear about a program you’re particularly proud of.
Hmm…. this is a hard one! I think a program that stands out right now for me, is our Moving Diaries program. During the pandemic, we like everyone, had to change how we interact and how we create. We had some community partners saying their seniors were really struggling - scared, isolated, alone. we created a zoom program that includes movement, conversation, and journaling. We have about three centers we work with now, and attendance has increased each week. We hope to start doing more in person as the pandemic recedes.
Q: Can you tell us the impact that seasonal giving has for Cleo Parker Robinson Dance?
If you are familiar with nonprofits, you know a huge chunk of what keeps them going is individual donors. If you look at organizations of color, you’ll see we have struggled a little more. Arts organizations with a European background often share that individual donations make up 40% of the contributed revenue. For organizations of color individual donations have historically been closer to 7%. At CPRD, we have been fortunate enough to grow this support under Malik Robinson (Cleo’s sons and our Executive Director) but we are still way below where we’d like to be.
Individual donations support our dancers and our scholarship program, help subsidize our school arts-in-education, help pay young technical theatre interns, support our historic Black Church and home office, and just allow us to bring art to everyone who needs it…who we believe is everyone!
Q: Anything else you think our readers should know?
Thank you again! We appreciate the meaningful work Cleo Parker Robinson Dance does and we’re proud to partner with you through our Uplift program.
At Propeller, giving back to the community is a meaningful part of our culture. Through our Propeller Uplift program, we leverage the business acumen of our consultants to support the needs of nonprofit partner organizations. Our goal is to make a lasting impact and uplift organizations through strategy, professional development, or direct service.
Serving our local communities has been a focus since Propeller started in 2012. What started as a small group of enthusiastic founding members with a vision for our firm’s community involvement has evolved into an established and award-winning team program.