Five years ago after several conversations with African American mothers in our community who had daughters who wanted to take ballet, we began Project D.A.N.C.E, an inclusive outreach program to help nurture an underrepresented demographic in our community. We reached out to the Meeting Street Academy, located in downtown Spartanburg, to begin a partnership with a vision to support students of color with yearlong ballet lessons. Project D.A.N.C.E. focuses on learning life skills such as respect, dedication, responsibility, perseverance, self-esteem, honesty, confidence, and resilience in concert with the highest of quality ballet training. Diversity and inclusivity are key to strengthening cultural relationships in our community. Ballet Spartanburg recognizes the value of all members of our community and the need for all populations to have life changing opportunities through educational dance training.
The program has grown over the past five years to support 12 dancers this season.These young students share the desire to train in dance each week, to hone their skills and to develop meaningful and useful life skills. Since the inception of the program, we can now support 12 students on full scholarship for Project D.A. N.C.E. Our goal is support 20 students, male and female, in 2021. In five years, 21 dancers have danced with Project D.A.N.C.E scholarship funding. Two of those dancers have danced with us for four years.
The scholarships for Project D.A.N.C.E. are funded by generous community members, leaders, businesses and foundations to support these students to follow their passion for ballet. We are forever grateful to these community members, leaders, businesses and foundations who share our vision for this programming. Project D.A.N.C.E students and parents thank you. We thank you.
If you are interested in Project D.A.N.C.E and would like to help with this scholarship program, you may donate to the program by clicking here. $531 a year will support one dancer for a full year of dance lessons. As a sponsor of a student of Project D.A.N.C.E.