Headshot of Anna Malone

Anna Malone

Anna Malone has been nominated by Heather Akehurst, CEO of Open Awards. Heather says “I’m nominating Anna and the wonderful Anamal Dance Company which is based on the Wirral. Although Anamal is an international award-winning dance studio, Anna’s vision is that the dancers of all ages have fun and reach their wider potential.

During lockdown one, Anna moved lessons online very quickly and also personally drove to see every dancer and have a socially distanced chat with them. She introduced lots of fun competitions encouraging dancer interaction.

For this lockdown not only will lessons continue online working towards a Christmas DVD, making sure dancers can continue with their exam preparation and lots of individual and team fun competitions.

In addition, there’s to be a big Zoom party for all the dancers and again Anna will personally drive round to see each dancer. Anna cares deeply for each dancer’s mental health and wellbeing.


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Who has she helped/who will she help?

Heather says “It not only helps the hundreds of dancers who attend Anamal but their parents too who are worried about their children’s physical and mental health. In addition, the dance school supports local events.”

What’s worked?

“Moving to online so quickly during lockdown 1 and then investing significantly in large screens, training for the staff and additional ICT facilities so that any dancers in self-isolation can continue to join classes and see their friends.”

What has she learned? Any challenges?

“Anna has learned all the way through the pandemic and very quickly, constantly looking to improve how the service is provided to the dancers and constantly thinking of ways to make it better for them; constantly introducing full elements.”

What’s next?

“Anna is working hard to constantly improve her service – with a Christmas DVD replacing the two shows and ensure that dancers can remain involved even during lockdown and self-isolation.”

What advice, contacts, or resources would help her?

“Anna is great – it would be fabulous if she could receive some additional business mentoring support.”

Why we’re sharing these stories

Each year, an individual or organisation from each of our five categories plus one exceptional judges’ choice individual is recognised at our annual Igniting Inspiration celebration event.

We publish each and every nomination to raise awareness of all the positive work that goes on in the North. While, this year, our physical event had to be deferred, our campaign to spread stories of positive social impact continues – good news is needed!