There is nothing much closer to my heart than dancing for and supporting one of my favorite nonprofit’s → p:ear. “p:ear mentors Portland’s homeless youth to affirm personal worth and create healthier lives and communities.” Ever since I completed an internship with them in 2012 (OMG!) when I was getting my Bachelors, I have been hooked. Meaning, I will forever love them. They create a space for youth who are looked down upon in society, providing access to art, recreation, hiking, bike-building, barista school, GED prep and housing, to name a few. Over the years, I have returned to volunteer for their annual fundraiser. If you have ever attended a large fundraising event before, it is pretty moving to see people lift their bidder paddles and donate thousands of dollars! Thank you people. You are cool.
This was the second year, I was able to organize a group of dancers to perform at the annual fundraiser, p:earblossoms. The theme was Rights of Passage and celebrated p:ear's 16th year! The Development Director, Pippa Arend, wanted us as dancers to represent the homeless youth they serve. I knew I had to loop in my Krump dancer friends as they are so good at sharing their raw energy and emotion. Together, we created three pieces, one that was more light-hearted, joyful, fun, the second that was raw, deep, sad, and a third that showed strength, empowerment and will.
I am grateful for this opportunity to create and excited to continue partnering with p:ear!
Aren't we cute?
All pics (except the last photo) by Cheryl Juetten