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Dancing with the NWABA Stars

NWABA staff mid-dance move with her arms to the right and heel up.During the month of October, Northwest Association for Blind Athletes (NWABA) is partnering with fellow non-profit, Blind Grace out of Louisiana, and encouraging blind and visually impaired (BVI) youth to put on their dancing shoes.

Blind Grace’s mission is to bridge the gap between BVI families and available resources and wanted to focus on physical activity and fitness throughout the month of October, giving NWABA the perfect opportunity to partner on this project.

Blind Grace Founder, Blanche Faulk, has been working with the BVI community since 2003 and founded this organization in 2022 as a way to do more to promote awareness. Through experience, community involvement and professional relationships, Blind Grace is bridging the gap with creative solutions like this dance challenge.

NWABA team members pre-recorded a series of audio-described, instructional videos to teach the steps to dances like the Macarena, Cupid Slide, Cha Cha Slide, Monster Mash, Cotton Eyed Joe and more. The challenge is to encourage youth in grades K to 12 to participate by learning and recording videos of all the dances by the end of the month. Anyone who sends in a video will receive an NWABA t-shirt.

The idea behind structured dance is that there are many popular songs and dance moves that BVI youth miss due to the lack of incidental learning occurring during natural opportunities to grasp these moves; whether at school dances, parties, etc. By providing descriptive dance videos, these young individuals can dance on with their sighted peers.

“I am so happy to partner with local organizations to provide opportunities for family events, mentorships and independence. We should all give ourselves some grace and know that is ok to ask for help and lean on others when you need them.” says Blanche.

By working with other BVI supportive organizations, this dance challenge is yet another way that NWABA is expanding their Virtual Programs and is excited to have the support of fellow organizations such as Blind Grace. This collaboration will support our increasing visibility efforts and distribute adapted sports resources in the Southeast and other areas that lack the resources for BVI communities in their areas. To view the Dance Challenge instructional videos, visit our YouTube channel.

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