A Tipton-based dance teacher is running free dance classes for local children.
Time Step Dance have received £2,775 from the Police and Crime Commissioner – Simon Foster – to cover 3 months of hall hire, and to give each child a “happy pack” which will include a fidget toy and a notebook to help those who struggle with anxiety.
The money, which can’t be spent on police officers, has been taken from criminals and is being ploughed back into community groups that are supporting people as we recover from the pandemic.
Young people have been dealt a bad hand as a result of Covid. Many have been unable to attend school, see friends and family, and have been cut off from other groups that they relied on for support.
This has had a harmful effect on their emotional and mental wellbeing, leaving many children feeling withdrawn and anxious.
During lockdown the dance teachers, who are all volunteers, continued to support young people by filming dance routines that they could watch on YouTube.
The dance classes will help the children reintegrate and relearn social skills, whilst also building their confidence, self-esteem and fitness.
Importantly, every single young person can attend the classes without paying a penny.
A large number of children in the local area come from disadvantaged families, who if it wasn’t for Time Step Dance may not be able to afford to attend dance classes.
Each week around 175 young people attend the classes, based in the WMA Community Fitness Centre, and their ages range from just 18 months to 21 years.
“Access to affordable extracurricular activities is essential for supporting our young people as we emerge from the pandemic, which is why I am thrilled to have provided Time Step Dance with funding so that they can continue to be there for local children”, said West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, Simon Foster.
“Children have had their lives turned upside down during the pandemic, being cut off from friends and family and spending the majority of their time inactive.
“I am pleased to use cash seized from criminals to support our younger generation”.
Vicky Parkinson, Time Step Dance Founder, said “We are so grateful for the funding from the Community Initiatives fund.
“It has allowed us to restart our sessions without worrying about finances and to provide happy packs for our children which have spread a little happiness and supported their mental and emotional wellbeing after such a difficult year”.Back to News Archive