In January this year we received your cheque for $6,000.00 for our “Gift of Dance” program for disadvantaged children. Three of our ten students are about to do their level seven exams which will allow them to become assistant teachers. They were the first students to go onto the program. They came to our attention when we began taking students from the local primary school, for dance classes. As they would not join in the school’s sport program the students involved caused problems for the teachers as they were left to amuse themselves in class while the rest of the school did sport.
After talking to the school liaison teacher we came upon the idea of taking the students for dance classes as our studio was just down the road and they could walk to it. The liaison teacher accompanied them. At first things didn’t go too well but eventually they settled in and the teacher remarked on the improvement they were making in their behaviour in school classes.
The three students who are now about to do their level 7 exams started to ask if they could come to regular dance classes. After talking to the liaison teacher she informed us that their families would never be able to afford the classes even though our fees are kept to a minimum. So we decided to start the “Gift of Dance” program. These three students have made us very proud. They are all now at high school and have become lovely well mannered teenagers. This October they will be part of a group of other students on the program who will compete in Toowoomba’s Youth Ballet competitions. If it wasn’t for the help of the Kirby Foundation then I don’t think we could have continued with the program. It makes me feel so great to see the difference that dance can do for children who otherwise may have gone astray.
Gaynor A Lock
Principal, Northside Dance Studio Inc.