June 27, 2022
Three weeks ago, the Women's Legal Service Queensland's (WLSQ) Dancing CEO's event took to the Brisbane City Hall stage for the ninth year in a row, raising its highest amount of $524, 348.
The WLSQ body said their services are offered to 38,000 Queensland women; however, 30% of calls remain unanswered due to resource limitations.
"By donating to Dancing CEOs, you aren't just supporting your CEO – you are helping another Queensland woman and her children to safety," they said.
The event comes at an important time as recent data from the Australian Government's Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) found domestic violence increased during the pandemic.
The AIHW found that 18% of women said they had experienced abusive behaviour for the first time, and 26% of women said they were "unable to seek assistance on at least one occasion due to safety concerns."
The Legal Leadership Project CEO and 2022 Dancing CEO's participant Midja Fisher said she embraced the opportunity to participate in the event after watching two former colleagues participate the previous year.
"I was sitting in the audience and thought this is something I could do, and it would be really out of my comfort zone and something different.
"I am also passionate about supporting WLSQ in their work to give women a safe space and strong voice when they need it most in their lives," she said.
Nova 106.9 head of direct sales and 2022 Dancing CEO's participant Mandi Tapp said she was inspired to participate after watching a video of a client taking part last year.
"She was sharing the video with me, and I just thought that it looked like a heap of fun, and when she said it was affiliated with WLSQ, I was intrigued.
"I did some dancing many years ago, and I've always had an interest in doing something out of my comfort zone and to tag on a charity to that is just fantastic," she said.
With the heart of the event consisting of fundraising for WLSQ, both participants heavily focused on reaching and exceeding the $30,000 fundraising goal.
Ms Fisher said that to be able to give her all to her dancing, her good friend Claire Evans assisted in leading the fundraising campaign.
"We ran two big fundraising events, so one we ran ourselves, a luau Christmas Party with 130 people, and we raised over $20,000 from the event.
"The second event was ticketed and a partnership with Future Females Australia at the Audi Centre on the Gold Coast.
"For me, it was important the attendees believed their money was well spent on both the event and the fundraising, she said."
Ms Tapp said she was always looking for ways to fundraise, including locating small things around the house to sell at her garage sale.
"Fundraising for charity changes your way of thinking, and it starts to consume you because you look for every opportunity to add a dollar to the cause," she said.