Jen Blackwell is Creative Founder and Director of DanceSyndrome. Jen has Down’s syndrome but at no point has that got in the way of her aspiration and determination. Ever since leaving mainstream school she wanted to be a community dance worker, but after more than 10 years of searching she never found appropriate training.Read More
Peter was born in 1978 at Bolton Royal Hospital. When Peter was a child it became clear that he had a speech impediment, a learning disability which means that although his brain processed information quite quickly he couldn’t always communicate what he was thinking and people found it very hard to understand him.
Jodie Turner is a young lady with quadriplegia cerebral palsy and non-verbal communication. Before enrolling in DanceSyndrome’s Dance By Example course she had taken part in a range of dance activities and though she loved to dance, she never thought it would be possible for her to pursue it as a career.
Lizi is 25 years old and started dancing at the age of 3 with Dimensions Dance School, in Oldham, where she lives. Dimensions are a large school who do annual shows at Middleton Arena – consisting of ballet, tap, jazz and modern dances. Lizi loves the shows because everyone has really glamorous costumes to dress up in!
Becky is 25 and lives in Fullwood in Preston. She joined DanceSyndrome in 2014 after her dad had heard about the charity through a leaflet. Becky loves DanceSyndrome! She has been dancing since a young age and has always wanted to teach dance, so the opportunities that DanceSyndrome has given her make Becky feel happy!
Dance by Example is DanceSyndrome’s unique training course which empowers people with learning disabilities to become dance leaders and those without learning disabilities to become support artists. Dorothy Shepherd completed Dance by Example in 2016. She explains in her own words why taking part in Dance By Example has been a valuable experience for her.
Pauline Hall is a Dance Leader and performer with DanceSyndrome. She joined DanceSyndrome in 2015 when she took part in our Dance By Example leadership training. Since then she has taken part in our weekly Clitheroe workshop, joined our performance troupe and participated in our weekly performance sessions.
Helen Cherry, from Merseyside, joined DanceSyndrome in 2017 at the age of 27. She took part in our unique Dance By Example leadership training course. She really loved the course and when it came to a close she really wanted to continue working with DanceSyndrome, so she joined the weekly sessions in Preston with the DS Collective performance team.
Together we can make a difference
If you are inspired by the amazing stories of how our Dance Leaders became involved with DanceSyndrome, why don’t you join us too? Everybody is welcome and there are lots of ways that you can get involved.