Peacebuilders Camp’s focus on human rights can lead us to take action in support of a wide range of causes and communities. In just these past three weeks, our campers have explored the Fair Trade movement, the Israel-Palestine conflict, health care disparities for migrant farm workers, hip hop and freedom of expression, Malala Yousafzai’s story and the right to education, the intersection of glass blowing and gun violence, domestic and international human trafficking, the right to leisure for people of all abilities, and the history of lynching in the United States.
Wow – that is a heavy list, but also one filled with stories of hope, activism, and connection. So to celebrate the successes of freedom movements and to relieve ourselves (if only for the afternoon) from the weight of systemic injustice, Tuesday at Peacebuilders Camp was a time to dance!
Full Radius Dance is professional company that brings, powerful, passionate, innovative dance to audiences around the world. Their founder, Douglas Scott, has become a leader in physically integrative dance that is inclusive and challenging for people of all physical abilities.
There are many therapeutic programs for people with disabilities, but Full Radius prides itself on being an arts-based dance company that also is inclusive of physical differences.
In our workshop with Douglas and the Full Radius dancers, each movement that we practiced was possible to perform from the floor, seated in a chair, or standing. Participating in these movement exercises and learning about physical differences helped us see how providing access to the arts for everyone can foster connections and equity.
And then the dancers performed for us. Watch!
When the performance was complete, Patrick, a 3rd year camper, approached the dancers and asked if he could perform for them. They agreed and Patrick strapped on his in-line skates and weaved and twisted in a beautiful skate dance. The professional dancers gave him positive and supportive feedback. He was all smiles afterwards and says that Full Radius inspired him to be an even better dancer! (Patrick is 2nd from the left in the picture at the top)