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2019 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Pure Ballroom Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Arts Services

Mission: Our mission is to empower individuals through education, motion and the arts.

Target demographics: empower students through education, engagement and motion.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 1750 students in 82 classrooms across 14 schools

Geographic areas served: Great Pittsburgh Area

Programs: The E.S.T.E.E.M. Group, which uses yoga, fitness and dance to meet students where they are and challenge them to grow and develop social emotional learning skills that are important to thrive in life.

Community Stories

12 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Gene and her team are absolutely the best! My Kindergarten students look forward to the ESTEEM group every week. I love how they teach the kids self control and how to work together. I love joining in with my students to show them that everyone can participate. My students take what they learn from the ESTEEM group and apply it to the classroom environment. We talk about body control when we are around others and it has helped tremendously. This program is so needed in every school!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

So many people say, “We’ve got to do something about this” but fail to step up. Gena and her team at The ESTEEM Group have done that and more. At first glance, it may just look like dancing and yoga. But, I’ve watched our K, 2nd, and 4th grade students grow as a class community and as individuals. Students who were reluctant to try because they didn’t know how, or felt they would be laughed at for not being good, learned that everyone is a learner at some point. Persistence pays off. Encouragement goes far. Have fun with others. This is the practical, day by day social emotional learning that our students need. The proof was the performances for parents who are even more reluctant! Students gave the same encouragement and step by step directions as they had been given. The transfer we look for. I can’t wait for the rest of our students to participate this year!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

In my 20-year career I have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly as far as social and educational programming goes. Pure Ballroom is a fantastic organization that is at the top of my list, and I am proud to be associated with it! Gena is a mission-driven leader who brings the perfect synthesis of dancing, teaching, and managerial experience to the organization. She is supported by a group of passionate, creative, and dedicated teaching artists. Pure Ballroom’s programing develops a student’s self-esteem, self-control, and various social skills. It is critical to support organizations like Pure Ballroom, since they work to support the health and wellness of our youth and communities.

1 Deborah D.3

Donor

Rating: 5

Exercise! Moving! Dancing! Yoga pretzels and Ballroom steps!

Muscle toning, heart strengthening, adrenaline pumping, perspiration dripping!

Motivating, inspiring, enlightening, exiting, engaging, calming, Ice breaking!

Comforting, connecting, supporting, acquainting, conversing, friendship making!

Self confidence building, self esteem fueling, self image sparkling!
Cha Cha! Rumba! Salsa! Jive!

All of the above are incredible gifts to the children of Pittsburgh Public Schools thanks to the vision, passion, dedication and commitment of Gena Melago and her The ESTEEM Group.

My daughter loves her job as Teaching Artist! Through her love and experience with dance, she can encourage a smile, teach a dance, and maybe even inspire a new passion.

Thank you to the ESTEEM Group!
Every school in America needs you!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been supporting Pure Ballroom Inc. since the inception of The E.S.T.E.E.M. Group program. I could not be more proud of the hard work and dedication the staff have to each and every school and student. They take the time to hear what the needs of the school are and they do their best to make sure that those needs are being met. I will continue to volunteer and support Pure Ballroom Inc. well into the future as it is a cause that is truly worth it.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It's hard not to smile when you see The ESTEEM Group working with children in the Pittsburgh area. I have had the opportunity to spend my time with the organization and watch it grow (at an amazingly fast rate) for the past year. The program is beneficial not only to the children, but also the staff, family and community members of the areas served. The most rewarding part of the program is when a child says they are more confident in themselves.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I cannot say enough wonderful things about this organization. Gena and her entire staff run an amazing school-wide program. From start to finish, they are a fun, energetic, and professional group that keep the students physically active and engaged the entire time. We couldn't be happier with the way the program has run in our school this year. The variety of activities, ranging from yoga, dance, team building, and fitness, find a way to reach the needs and interests of each and every student. The team-building and social/emotional based lessons have done wonders for individual students' self-esteem and overall class cohesion. My students are excited to come to class to see what they are doing next. While in class they are positively working and interacting with all the other students without complaining. We love having the E.S.T.E.E.M. group in our school and cannot wait for next year.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Truly a 5 Star organization. The staff is professional and tailors the curriculum to meet specific grade level and individual student needs. Our students were immediately engaged and responsive to the program's goals. The skills and mindfulness activities taught within are easily applied throughout the school environment. Students experienced positivity, success, and showed a transformation while they participated and far after the program ended for the remainder of the school year.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Horrible, un-professional, boring, and lackluster are words that I would NEVER use to describe Pure Ballroom! This is a wonderful program that helps build self-esteem while helping students become active! Through this program I have noticed clear and immediate changes in students. Students that were fidgety became calmer, quiet students became more confident, and students that were always excited and looking forward to their next visit of Pure Ballroom. This innovative and intuitive program looks at the needs of the classroom, the student, and the teacher and adapts their curriculum and targets these specific needs. Through the use of Yoga, mindfulness, dance, teambuilding, and self-awareness students transform and become better individuals. This is a wonderful program that will not disappoint!! ~SJFL

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Having lived in Pittsburgh for the past 12 years, I can say that I have seen very few programs in the area with such invested staff and such a community impact. Thank you Pure Ballroom Inc.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This organization has the best programming for students in all of the Pittsburgh area. I have been giving my time to Pure Ballroom Inc., 3 times a week, for over a year now, and I can see the difference it is making; not just in the students’ lives, but in their families’ lives as well. The program enhances all aspects of their education using music and movement, which is unfortunately now lacking in most schools. This is something that the students and school staff really love, and so do all of the Pure Ballroom Inc. staff and volunteers.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have observed the program in several classrooms and I saw that the children had learned so much in such a short time. It is amazing at how they listen, pay attention and respond so well to the directions of what is expected of them. The children are very happy while they are participating in this program. The teachers from the school that I observed were very pleased and impressed with the program as well as the behaviors their children have shown as a result of the program.