Leaps & Bounds Positive Impact on ParticipantsFri 21 February 2020
Part of: Leaps and Bounds
Leaps and Bounds is a programme of creative dance session for adults with learning disabilities that aims to develop confidence, independence, social and physical skills, fitness and expression.
. We run four free sessions every week for adults that attend day centres across Leeds and have been working with four talented local artists Ellen Turner, Sara Ribeiro, Matilde Torres and Charlotte Jones. These sessions are supported by Aspire Community Benefit Society. Leaps and Bounds has been running for over 10 years and has had a tangible and significant impact on the individuals involved. At the end of each term, groups have an opportunity to share what they have been working on.
One of the Leaps and Bounds groups, who attend the session on a Monday, have been exploring the theme of ‘the elements’ as an inspiration for their piece. They have been using music and their imaginations to inform their movements, using ideas of fire, water and ice to engage with different dynamics and shape their movement vocabulary.
One member of the Monday group, Sally*, joined the session half way through the term. Sally usually prefers her own space and participates by sitting on a chair on her own during the session, doing some of the movements by herself. However, on the last session of the term, the group shared the short piece of dance they had been working, to a small audience. In the sharing, Sally physically took part in the dance, standing and performing together with the group. This marks a real shift for Sally as it is one of the first times she has actively chosen to join in, rather than sit at the side by herself. This shows a significant improvement in her ability to work as part of the group, as well as real growth in her confidence. One of the support workers for the group said “Sally has never shown any signs of anxiety whilst at Yorkshire Dance [which is a real positive for Sally, who often struggles with feelings of anxiety] and so her experience at Yorkshire Dance can be considered a success”.
We are so pleased to be able to offer the fun, creative and brilliantly engaging Leaps and Bounds sessions to adults attending Aspire day centres. It is a joy to see the groups develop in confidence, strength and creativity, learn new skills and have fun as part of a group every week!
We are incredibly grateful to Aspire for believing in the power of dance to improve people’s lives, and for enabling these incredibly valuable sessions to happen every week.
*Participant’s name has been changed for safe guarding purposes.