I have seen the joy first hand that Dancin Power (DP) brings to children and families. The hospital environment can be scary and overwhelming. The DP program brings a lightness and opportunity for expression that is liberating for children and their families. I was eager to join not only as a teacher but as a board member in order to support this amazing organization. The founder Vania is an amazing tireless advocate for the children and I am excited to be a part of it!
I have been a volunteer dance instructor with the Dancin Power program for the past 4 years. Vania's enthusiasm and dedication to the program and it's mission inspired me tremendously and I knew I wanted to be involved. Vania is always patient focused, wanting the best experience for the kids but at the same time concerned that the volunteers have the support that is needed when caring for a vulnerable population. With her passion and endless energy she has grown this program from a one woman organization to a 501c3 with a committed board of directors, many volunteers, and multiple program locations. This is a great organization to be a part of!
Dancin Power brings together patients and their families with joy, creativity and inspiration. Young patients are given the opportunity to move, dance and express themselves with music within the hospital setting.Vania Deonizio is the brilliant guiding force behind Dancin Power. Vania is joined by a team of dedicated and enthusiastic volunteer dance teachers. We are trained and supported personally by Vania, and given the tools to best serve our participants. A dance class is specially created to give kids a fun and rewarding class, while increasing their self-esteem in an encouraging environment.
I am a volunteer dance teacher with Dancin Power, and am so grateful to have found this incredibly worthwhile nonprofit organization.
Dancin Power, touches the lives of children, parents, staff and teachers in such an incredible and unique way. A way through dance, which is often set to the side as a crucial role in therapeutic settings, but one that has the ability to turn a life around. My work with Dancin Power, has not only effected my own interpersonal grown and transformation, but I have literally been a witness to this change in families and children. Dancin Power, is a very special and wonderful program that brings a smile to the face of someone who often hasn't felt one in a while, which becomes a domino effect of smiles all around. I love this program!
Dancin Power is a wonderful program, that inspires everyone involved or around the magic. As a volunteer, I get to share my love through dancing in the hospital with some of the most incredible little human beings i have ever met. it is a way to lift spirits, in the most natural, energetic and human way possible, through dancing! When you arrive at the hospital, to the point of leaving, it is so obvious the impact Dancin Power has on the kids, the hospital staff and their parents. It creates a time of relief, a sanction to escape into a wonderful moment of dance, music and community. I have seen so many hearts be lifted through Dancin Power, as well as my own. I think this program has an incredible impact, and i would love to see it expand and get more recognition, because it truly is phenomenal.
Vania and her team are doing in valuable work for the precious children whose strength you could never imagine. Those undergoing cancer treatment way too young and survivors of burn incidents Vania is bringing a true gift to them and their families. I have been able to see firsthand The joy and energy that these children in exude because they are part of the Dancin Power program. They deserve a huge voted big knowledge meant and I hope their programs expand far and wide!
I began volunteering as a teacher-in-training with Dancin Power a few months ago after meeting the Founder, Vania, and Co-Founder, Sarah by chance after a dance movie. Vania was wearing a Dancin Power shirt and spoke to me about the program with such heartfelt enthusiasm and belief in what they were doing. I walked away from the conversation with a brochure and a deep knowledge in my heart that I wanted to be involved. As a professional dancer and public health professional I was excited about what I could bring into the lives of these children and their families but since volunteering I have found that I am the one rewarded and inspired by the strength and attitudes of the amazing individuals I have met and worked with through Dancin Power. Whether through music, movement, stories in motion or performance, seeing first-hand the smiles and energy of the participants is priceless. Though I have been dancing and teaching for over two decades I cannot say enough about all I have learned through the program and those involved. Vania is an extremely dedicated and capable leader, teacher and trainer. As a volunteer I have appreciated her overall energy, knowledge and approach in how she conducts the program and trains volunteers. She is extremely sensitive to the needs of the children and families we serve as well as our needs as teachers to provide a fun and supportive atmosphere for participants. Vania takes the time to train and nurture the volunteer teachers to work appropriately with the patients' needs in the hospital setting simultaneously allowing them to bring their own unique voices, talents and ideas to the program. I am thankful to be part of this amazing program and encourage people to support Dancin Power in any way they can.
I volunteered with Vania ( the founder) one day at Children's Hospital Oakland ( where I am a data analyst) and it was just wonderful. Dance therapy really does make children with mobility issues feel better, laugh and be kids.
I had the opportunity to play music for one of Dancin Power's classes at the Shriners Hospital in Sacramento. I never thought I would be playing loud, high energy samba music in the atrium of a large children's hospital, but it worked wonderfully. The class was quite interactive for both the children and adults in attendance! Though little pressure was put on people to participate, most were engaged and visibly having a good time. The class was set up so each person could do as much or as little as they wanted or could do. At one point we went around the room and everyone made up their own dance moves for the whole class to try, which got people creating and laughing. Vania does an excellent job helping people to enjoy the basic pleasures of dance and music, in many different states of capability, age, and enthusiasm.
Dancin Power is fueled by the love and passion of the volunteers. It is amazing to witness the love of dance and music being shared with patients and families. Dancin Power has the ability to bring kids and their families together in a way that no other program can. The magic that happenes when dance is brought into stressful or otherwise negative situations is truly incredible. The positivity and belief in possibility that Dancin Power has is contagious, and has opened my eyes to what can happen when ideas and dreams are pursued.
This is a fantastic nonprofit organization. I volunteered with Dancin Power from 2011-2012 as a dance teacher and assistant. Visiting Children's Hospital Oakland with Dancin Power was one of the best parts of my week. Seeing the children's faces light up once we got moving, or seeing kids start out shy and grow more confident as the class progressed always gave me the "warm fuzzies" and made me look forward to coming back the next week. Witnessing the children reclaim their body to dance and have a good time was incredibly inspiring and just thinking about it makes me miss the being part of the program.
In addition to going to Children's hospital, I also went to Shriner's with Vania. This was an awesome experience because not only did she teach a children's class, she also taught a class for mothers of children in the hospital. The mothers' class was popular and a wonderful outlet and moment of self-care for them. Parents often forget to take time for themselves, and it was great that Vania was willing to give these devoted mothers a some time to let loose.
Overall, I definitely felt my time was well spent there.
I have been fortunate enough to witness first-hand the amazing affect this program has on children in the hospital. I have seen children who were initially withdrawn come out of their shell and flourish through dance and music. I have seen children who previously thought they couldn't do things based on their disabilities or being in a wheelchair be empowered by the modifications Dancin Power was able to make to allow them to move and groove. The children can laugh, smile and get some exercise all at the same time. It's a great program that brings joy to so many hospitalized children and their families.
I, personally, am suffering with a brain tumor. I no longer can dance. But, Dancin Power reminded me that I can dance with the movement I do have in my body. I find such joy and strength dancing with the children and the other volunteers, even if we're sitting down, even if we can't raise our arms above our heads. Dancin Power shows us that, yes, we can express ourselves with our bodies even in the midst of our pain and limitations. To feel empowered again in our bodies - even in the midst of the trauma - heals the mind.
The joy of music and movement lifts children from their afflictions to a positive, happy and empowered place.
There are many groups that bring joy and comfort. DancinPower is unique. To see the smiles, determination and happiness on the faces of these children who struggle with illness, disease and injury brings tears and hope to me. Tears seeing the joy on their faces and hope that DancinPower will continue their wonderful service. I will continue to donate and support this valuable group and encourage others to do so,too.
I have had the powerful experience of witnessing the profound effect Dancin Power has on the children at Children's Hospital Oakland. I am proud to be a dance teacher with this organization as I see the affect of kids change instantly when they see us walk into their rooms with our stereo and bright t-shirts, they know it is dance time; and time to forget they are in the hospital. Their room becomes their sanctuary, their stage, their time to dance with Michael Jackson; whatever they are wanting to experience that day we bring it to them through dance and movement. My most powerful moment as a teacher with Dancin Power was dancing with a young boy, age 8, who was residing in the Oncology unit. He was able to stand up out of bed for the first time in a few days when I started the music. We danced to all of his favorite Michael Jackson hits, we moonwalked with our fingers, and ended with his favorite, "Man in the Mirror", I will never forget the peace that came over his face as he closed his eyes, snapped his fingers and sang his little heart out. He was definitely on stage, not a hospital room.
Dancin Power is an amazingly inspiring program, and I can't say enough good thing about it! When illness or injury comes into our lives, it can feel incredibly isolating--ironically, just when the need for connection is at its greatest. Dancin Power meets children who are carrying the burden of serious illness right where they are. It provides a safe and supportive space for these kids to experience whatever kind of joyful, health-supportive physical expression they can, guided by volunteers who help them find movements that feel fun and comfortable, despite any physical limitations. Anyone who sees a Dancin Power session as "just a dance class" is just not paying attention! A Dancin Power session, lead by its tireless leader Vania or any one of the team of dedicated and caring volunteer instructors, is an incredible reminder to children who are often no strangers to pain or discomfort that their bodies can still be a source of expression and fun. As a Dancin Power volunteer, I have been privileged to witness firsthand the simple joy that movement can bring to a room-bound kid or the awakening to one's body not as a source of embarrassment or shame but as a source of fun and self-expression. Dancin Power truly delivers on its mission to inspire and empower kids through movement.
I volunteered for a dance class and it was one of the most inspiring, empowering, and fun experiences I've had. Volunteers, attendees, kids, adult, all became one entity, without differences or boundaries, enjoying the experience, music, and movement. Truly a gem of an organization, ran by whole-hearted people!