DanceSyndrome is thrilled to have received a donation of £1,320 from Care Housing Association, to support the work of Dance Leaders with learning disabilities across Lancashire, Greater Manchester and Nottingham.
Care Housing Association, based in Rawtenstall Lancashire, develops Specialist Supported Housing, predominantly in the North West, for people requiring support. They partner with specialist support providers and local authorities to ensure all their tenants receive appropriate care and support in order to empower them to live as independently as possible within the community.
DanceSyndrome is a multi-award winning dance charity that delivers inclusive dance workshops and dance leadership training, as well as inspiring performances that demonstrate a focus on ability rather than disability. The charity was founded by Jen Blackwell, who happens to have Down’s syndrome, because she found it difficult to find opportunities in community dance due to her disability. DanceSyndrome’s ethos is that disability should never be a barrier to following your dreams. Dancers with and without disabilities work together to inspire people to see what can be achieved when we all become more inclusive.
In March, the COVID-19 outbreak meant that the vulnerable adults that DanceSyndrome support would need to observe social distancing for at least twelve weeks. The charity had to adapt quickly. The DanceSyndrome team wanted to limit the impact of isolation on participants and continue to make them feel a part of what they refer to as “the dancing family”. They decided to take the workshops online using Facebook and YouTube to bring the sessions to regular participants and anyone else who wanted to use them to stay active at home during isolation. These sessions are free to access but DanceSyndrome is still paying self-employed Dance Artists to deliver them. The funding provided by Care Housing Association is enabling this online provision to continue, along with donations from the public.
Care Housing Association CEO Matthew Eddisford said, “DanceSyndrome provides crucial, inclusive opportunities for people with disabilities. I believe equality of access to opportunities such as these which provide a real sense of achievement, an output for individual creativity, and promote the remarkable abilities of some of the participants, is incredibly positive and invaluable. Dawn and her team’s ethos is very much aligned to that of our team at Care and we are happy and proud to be able to support them.”
DanceSyndrome MD Dawn Vickers said, “We are deeply grateful to Matthew and his team for supporting our work with this donation and look forward to building a long lasting relationship between the two charities, to enable the people we serve to lead better, more independent lives. At DanceSyndrome we empower adults with learning disabilities to gain skills not just for dancing and dance leadership but for living independent lives. Care Housing support individuals to access the best housing and support appropriate for their needs. This is a great partnership that I’m sure will benefit many learning-disabled adults whilst give peace of mind to their families and loved ones”.
For more information about Care Housing Association, please visit www.careha.org.uk.
If you would like to try out the free online dance sessions yourself, visit our YouTube channel. If you’re inspired by Care Housing Assocication’s generous donation and would like to donate yourself, you can donate directly using the form below or visit the Fundraising page of this site for other ways to donate.