Monday 23 April 2018

Chucking a Tantrum

There are many ways that Edelman rewards its staff, but better yet, Edelman enables us to help the causes and organisations we are passionate about through initiatives such as the Edelman Community Investment Grants. When I heard about the grant program I was immediately interested and here’s why:

Prior to joining Edelman, I worked part time as the Marketing Coordinator for a not-for-profit youth theatre company in Newcastle called Tantrum Theatre. It’s hard to describe this amazing company and everything it does, however the following story paints a pretty good picture of Tantrum’s innovation and creativity…

After getting the job, my first experience with Tantrum was attending one of its productions called Peepshow which took place in a rundown arcade in Newcastle. While I was waiting in the foyer, ready to go in and watch the play, a loud and rough looking man stumbled into the arcade, asking audience members for spare change. He was making people nervous and I was hoping he wouldn’t ruin the night for everyone. Eventually he gave up and started walking away – into the arcade. He wasn’t just a man off the street, he was the start of the play! We were then escorted by an eccentric character into the first of many rooms – a kid’s birthday party hosted by a pregnant single mum who dished out cupcakes to her guests. Following this, and moving room to room, we had our fortunes read, watched a woman have a breakdown over chair arrangements, had a tea party, helped a man shut himself into a fridge and so much more. It was the best production I had ever experienced, and was redeveloped for the Sydney Fringe Festival last year.

Tantrum Theatre's upcoming production 'Keewee Froot' - design by Heath Killen

When I finished university, the time came when I had to leave the Tantrum office for the office of Edelman Sydney. Tantrum had taught me so much from writing media releases and contacting journalists, to being creative, open minded and that ideas are never too farfetched – a great start to my career in PR. I loved working with Tantrum so much that I couldn’t quite leave them – I now continue to volunteer with marketing initiatives and spreading the word about this great company and its activities. Not only does Tantrum give young people, regardless of ability or background, an opportunity to build their confidence, independence and drama skills, it also offers a wide range of other opportunities including stage production and design. Tantrum’s next production is Keewee Froot which has been developed by 5-17 year old performers.

Tantrum was one of the Edelman Community Investment Grant applicants selected to receive a $2,500 grant which will be used to provide drama scholarships for underprivileged young people in the Newcastle and Hunter region. This was one of 30 community projects to be funded in this round of grants (in which Edelman provided a total of $71,500USD to organisations all over the world). Here’s a great video about how the grants make a difference in local communities.

Thinking about volunteering? Go Volunteer is a great starting point. There are lots of great not-for-profit organisations out there who need volunteers.