Dréa’s Dream continues to bring the power of dance to fragile children 

 
The Dréa’s Dream pediatric dance therapy session described in this story is funded by The Andréa Rizzo Foundation.
 
Dréa’s Dream continues to bring the power of dance to fragile children at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital St. Louis, Missouri. Thanks to the continued support and funding by the Pazazz Performers, our program continues to grow! I have been extremely blessed to participate as a dance/movement therapist with the Dréa’s Dream program over the past two years. Weekly I work, one on one, with children staying in the hospital – providing them with the joy of dance and giving them an opportunity for movement, connection and emotional expression.
 
I recently worked with a 7-year old girl who was paralyzed from the waist down. When I met her, she was lying very still in bed, watching TV, reportedly feeling “bored” and experiencing pain from a recent major surgery.  During our session together we created an elaborate dance performance in her bed, including costumes, a “curtain” (e.g. scarfs) and dance performances by her two American Girl dolls. 
 
The patient chose the songs based on themes for the dance.  We had water dances, fire dances and then empowerment dances to songs like Katy Perry’s “Roar” and Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song”.  The girl used the dancing color scarves in the choreography and eventually began dancing herself engaging in balletic arm and head movements in synchronicity with the music. 
 

She was smiling, laughing and expressing her own courage and inner strength through song choice and improvised movements for her dolls and her own body.

 I knew that the movement and laughter had not only lifted her spirits but also engaged her physically in her “new body”, a body that is forever changed in its mobility. Mom also understood the importance of what was unfolding. Her eyes welled with tears numerous times throughout the session as she participated as the photographer and videographer for the performance. 
 
I continue to be humbled by the opportunity to work with and meet these amazingly brave children as a dance/movement therapist. Thank you to The Andréa Rizzo Foundation for making this possible! 
 
For more stories like these, go to Dréa’s Dream Stories

To help us provide dance/movement therapy to more children

Katie Bohn
Katie Bohn continues to provide dance/movement therapy to the Dréa’s Dream program at SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital St. Louis, Missouri
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