Dance for Tomorrow offers comprehensive and tuition-free ballet training to children in foster care, adoption,
subsidized guardianship, and others who are underserved.
In 1996, Ballet Chicago was approached to be a service provider for what eventually became Statewide Opportunities for Arts and Recreation (SOAR), a program of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. Through SOAR, Ballet Chicago provided up to 75 students annually with tuition-free ballet instruction. The SOAR students were integrated into the student body and experienced the benefits of arts enrichment like any other student enrolled at Ballet Chicago. The program continued without interruption until the 2012-2013 school year.
In August of 2012, the State unexpectedly ended their program and Ballet Chicago was left to continue the program on its own and absorb the costs; a yearly average of $60,000. Ballet Chicago will be unable to sustain the Dance for Tomorrow program long-term without the support to help make up the lost revenue. We are asking for your help.
When the State discontinued the SOAR program, Ballet Chicago immediately felt the loss, but maintained roughly 40 students who were already enrolled. Ballet Chicago invested a portion of its general operating revenue to the program, however this is not a long-term option. With a deep commitment to the current Dance for Tomorrow children and those to come in the future, we are asking for your generosity.
Please help us secure Dance for Tomorrow's future. This program has had an invaluable impact on countless children, some who have participated for several years. Their intellectual and emotional development has thrived in our structured, supportive environment and with your financial commitment; Ballet Chicago can maintain the program and welcome additional children.
We hope you will join us in supporting Dance for Tomorrow! We cannot leave these children waiting in the wings.
above: Ballet Chicago Studio Company member in the wings during Ballet Chicago's 2013 production of Serenade. Photography by Margo Ruter.