The Dancing Heart – Another Breakthrough

For many months we have nurtured a delightful gentleman in one of our adult day programs to encourage him to be more participatory. We understand some people take longer than others to feel comfortable so we took it slowly. At first he would sit in his wheelchair way in the back of the room and for weeks no amount of encouragement could get him to move closer to our circle. After several months we were able to convince him to get closer to the circle so for the next few weeks he sat just outside the circle. Most recently he relented and allowed us to position his wheelchair along with the other participants in the circle. And ever so slowly we were able to get him to talk, to share a little about his life and to bestow a smile or two. Occasionally we’d even see a twinkle in his eyes.

Last week we hit the jackpot. He seemed particularly energized and we engaged him in some chair dancing. Maria noticed that he was more engaged than usual and since we knew that he loved to dance in Africa where he grew up, she put on some West African dance music. That was just what was needed to spark the flame. In less than a minute after the music started he was laughing and talking and reliving those times when he was a popular young man at the dance hall in his home town. Watching him come alive, bursting with happiness, is one of the joyful experiences we at Dancing Heart get to have regularly. The magic that the music, the dance, the storytelling and poetry writing bring to these elders’ lives is a gift to the staff and the volunteers who are part of this remarkable program.

Please consider becoming a Dancing Heart volunteer. Not only will you find joy in bringing happiness to others but you will be amazed at how your own life will change. There’s always room for love!!



The mission of Kairos Dance Theatre is to transform and revitalize individuals and communities. We work with older adults in intergenerational settings to liberate the healing power of interactive dance and story. We achieve our mission by engaging the skills of professional teaching artists.

2 Responses to The Dancing Heart – Another Breakthrough

  1. Jackie Pahula says:

    I am a 62 year old retired teacher that loves to dance and loves people! Do you need volunteers like me? Let me know more about what you are looking for in volunteers.
    Jackie Pahula

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