Your projects. Our communities. Kent’s resilience
Over 55% of learning disabled people leave school without qualifications and only 5% are in employment. Due to prejudice and a lack of access, they are also twice as likely to be inactive. We know that dance empowers people to live healthy, confident and fulfilling lives. It also challenges prejudice about what LD people can achieve, showcased through performances and workshops. This raises expectations and paves the way to a kinder more inclusive society. At Confidance, we provide dance classes for LD young people in Ashford, LD adults in Folkestone and have formed a professional company of LD dancers who have been performing across Kent for the past 5 years. This project will raise essential funds for regular classes, workshops, training for our LD artists and strategic development to ensure security and growth for Confidance so that we can support more LD people in Kent to express themselves, make a meaningful contribution and be supported to pursue a career they love.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
We know that our classes have a positive impact on people and influence change, and that they: -are responsive to the needs, ambitions and creative voices of our participants - are joyful, welcoming and foster a strong sense of connection between everyone in the room - make people feel healthier, happier and heard by their peers and the wider community - offer a space for personal growth and empower participant’s voices This is important, as we know that people with learning disabilities are more likely to have poor mental and physical health due to societal barriers such as social exclusion, financial barriers, inaccessible communication and prejudice. Our work promotes independence, choice and creative self-expression. “Confidance classes are fun and exciting. I feel proud, coming and dancing every week. The team are so lovely to work with. I hope to do more performances and shows in the future.” (Participant)
Steps to get it done:
Here is what people we work with have to say about Confidance: “I enjoyed making new friends, learning new dance moves, I felt good and feel more confident. I enjoyed being busy dancing.” (Participant) “This is the singular session that my daughter attends which is meaningful and that she looks forward to every week. We couldn't be happier with the offer from Confidance for the young people we support.” (Parent) “Every member has increased knowledge of working together as part of a group, friendships have developed which showed throughout the dance.” (Support worker) "Participants have so much autonomy on how they build movement, they are taught the reasoning behind warmups, cool downs, importance of stretching and become so aware of their own bodies.” (Helen Francis, Kent County Council)
About the space
Community and professional training residencies, Stour Centre Ashford and Glassworks, Folkestone.
Shepway District Council