Your life as a young professional may be busy, but you also need to take time to smell the roses, or dance among the daisies. If dancing is your thing and you love working with children, check out the volunteer opportunities at Heart of Dance. This non-profit was inspired by Mad Hot Ballroom, a 2005 award-winning documentary (definitely worth the time to watch) filmed in New York City. That ballroom dance program changed the lives of some of the NYC public school kids who were part of the program. You can be a part of Minnesota’s Heart of Dance.

About Heart of Dance

Co-founders Andrea Mirenda and Ember Reichgott Jung developed Heart of Dance after experiencing the benefits of partner social dance. This particular physical activity helps with self-confidence, self-expression, and mental focus, while, at the same time, kids get physical exercise. It also allows them to express joyful, elegant movements and, of course, it’s fun. Ballroom dancing provides physical, social and emotional benefits for those who participate.

The Minnesota program is the 30th site of the global Dancing Classrooms movement. For over 20 years, fifth and eighth-grade kids worldwide have been experiencing the social and emotional benefits gained through this learning program. Heart of Dance teaching artists are New York-trained. Through them, the kids learn various dances: Merengue, Tango, Rumba, Foxtrot, Waltz and Swing. But it isn’t just the dancing.

Ballroom dancing provides many benefits, not the least of which is it connects dance to school subjects. Heart of Dance instructors work with classroom teachers. Dances are coordinated with students’ studies in math, English, social studies and art. By connecting the physical activity of ballroom dancing with classes, it sparks more interested in schoolwork and helps kids become better students.

Be Part of This Exciting Opportunity

Heart of Dance is looking for 5 to 10 volunteers to help with the program. There are a variety of ways in which you can help. They need classroom assistants for next fall; the commitment would be twice a week for 10 weeks. There are also events for which you can volunteer. You can help by becoming an ambassador and spreading the word to your networks. Contact Heart of Dance for more information.

We are excited for our newest JCI St. Paul event, Heart of Dance Colors of the Rainbow Tournament. And we are proud to help sponsor the spring competition for youth in the St. Paul and surrounding communities, which is the grand finale of many weeks of practice. Learn more: https://www.facebook.com/events/2642401299108872/