Moving Bodies Moving Boundaries {e.motion21 ~ Ballarat}

April 16, 2014 · 7 comments

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Today I want to share with you about an amazing, energetic and boundary pushing organisation that teaches dance to children and young adults with Down syndrome. I would love to be able to convey just how special this program is, and how much it means to those involved, but in all honestly I know words won’t do justice to what happens during an e.motion21 class. Seriously, if you could bottle the energy, enthusiasm and delight shown by these dancers you could probably solve world peace before you finish your morning coffee! It’s really that extraordinary.  

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But high wattage smiles and funky dance moves aside e.motion21 is all about sharing the amazing abilities of its dancers and using these abilities to change outdated beliefs about just what a person with Down syndrome is capable of doing. I’ve been lucky enough to be involved in our local Ballarat dance group for a little while now. I’ve gotten to know the people behind those massive smiles and been blown away by the skill and dedication of the dancers and their families. I’ve also volunteered in the class room and watched first-hand the commitment and skill of the dance teachers as they present dance and movement to their students with fun, excitement and an understanding of Down syndrome. Such an amazing experience and one I’m so glad I’ve had the opportunity to be part of.

emotion21dancer

 There are many reasons this program is so special.  It was founded out of one family’s need for their own daughter and has grown explosively because it mirrors the needs of many other families. (You can read more about Cate Sayers and this amazing journey here.)  It also connects deeply with the common human love of music, movement and fun and crosses all boundaries when it comes to building self-esteem, peer groups and personal wellbeing for people with Down syndrome. These are not just empty words either.  Last year, RMIT University conducted research in to the effectiveness of the program and the results were eye-opening. (You can find out more about the research by visiting the emotion21 website here.)

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So how did you go?  Can you get a sense of just how special this program is?  I hope so because what e.motion21 Ballarat really needs is for more people to get involved and support the program. That might mean considering becoming a volunteer mover in the classes.  If you have a heart for dance or people with Down syndrome I think this option would suit you perfectly. Full training is offered and the experience is amazing. Or perhaps you could offer a donation. As a not-for-profit organisation money is always tight and all donations, big and small, make a huge difference.  Donated funds are used to train new volunteers, buy dance class equipment and support the dancers to perform in the community. If you are a business owner and would like to be involved, I would love to talk to you about working in partnership to secure and build the future of the program in Ballarat. This might mean sponsorship or ‘in-kind’ donations of goods and services – all support is gratefully received and truly appreciated for the difference it makes.

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 You can find out more about e.motion21 by visiting the website . If you’d like to ask a question or offer support for the Ballarat site you can email me at ballaratrm@emotion21.org.au.  e.motion21 also is also on facebook and instagram – both awesome ways to stay in touch and show your support too.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 make my blog April 18, 2014 at 5:55 pm

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2 Sara G April 17, 2014 at 10:08 am

I hear your passion Caz. Sounds amazing. I have a friend with a little girl with down syndrome and she too has the worlds best smile. Thanks for sharing.

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3 Louise April 16, 2014 at 8:12 am

So Caz, you now have the best job in the whole world! How awesome, and what a beautiful organisation.
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4 Caz April 16, 2014 at 8:50 am

Yes Louise it is pretty awesome!! Thanks so much for sharing the story with all at Blossom Connect in Ballarat 🙂
Caz recently posted..Moving Bodies Moving Boundaries {e.motion21 ~ Ballarat}My Profile

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5 Shelly Browne April 16, 2014 at 6:06 am

Oh wow. How beautiful and amazing that program sounds Caz. The smiles kinda tell the story. I hope you get an equally amazing response.

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6 Caz April 16, 2014 at 8:51 am

Thanks Shell. Yes you have never really seen smiles until you seen these guys dance. 🙂
Caz recently posted..Moving Bodies Moving Boundaries {e.motion21 ~ Ballarat}My Profile

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