LaNia Dixon, APAH’s Resident Services Coordinator at Snowden’s Ridge, saw an opportunity to empower young residents when she noticed a group of girls consistently dancing in the parking lot after school. She asked the residents if they were interested in starting a dance team. Unanimously, the girls said yes so LaNia went to the parents for approval.
The Diamonds, which is the team’s official name, now practice twice a week year-round. In addition to routines that incorporate hip-hop, R&B, stepping, and cheerleading, the practices consist of lessons about team building, effective communication, and encouragement. The team has 11 members, and more are interested in joining. The Diamonds are eager to shine; they already have one performance under their belt and look forward to more. The team performed at one of APAH’s Easter Extravaganza events this past spring, which are annual celebrations to build community and welcome neighbors from all backgrounds. The team is currently looking into local competitions and events in Montgomery County, Maryland.
A member of the Diamonds shared, “my favorite part about the dance team is the sisterhood that we have formed. If a teammate is struggling on a routine, we all help.”