Friday, May 1, 2009

Philanthropy Friday Behind the Scenes with SNAP! Performance Productions

I had the pleasure of getting to learn more about SNAP! Performance Productions.  You can read my feature article on this non-profit performing arts group on Columbus Underground.

Here are more photos of the performing arts group in action!






For my behind the scenes look, I wanted to add a human interest side to their story and asked if SNAP! had a special memory about a group they helped. Below is co-founder and director, Lynette Shy's response and extremely touching story (warning you may need a box of tissues for this one):

I recently had the opportunity to work with some of the hearing-impaired children at our beneficiary charity - St. Vincent Family Centers (SVFC).  SVFC provides assistance to hearing-impaired and deaf children with severe emotional and behavioral health needs.  


Through SNAP!, I was able to teach tap dance classes to some of the children in their deaf services division.   Even though the children in this program cannot hear the sounds, they can feel the vibrations and can mimic the sound that way.  It was a rewarding experience all around, but there was one student who will always be in my heart.  


When I arrived for my very first class, “Nick” (who was 9 years old) gave me a name through sign language that translated roughly into “
Stinky L”.   

I smiled on the outside but thought, “What have I gotten myself into?!”


Nick called me “the mean lady” and told me dancing was “for girls not boys,” and then walked away and sat on the floor.   I told him he could sit and watch, and when he wanted to dance with me and the rest of his classmates, he could.  


With an interpreter’s help, I started showing and talking through some very basic but cool moves with the other children in the class.  Three minutes into the class, Nick had uncrossed his arms.  Within five minutes, he was watching intently (without the smirk), and eight minutes into the session he was standing in line trying to learn the moves. Within 15 minutes Nick knew the whole routine, and by the end of class he was joking and laughing with me and his friends!


After class was over and I was putting all the shoes away, Nick ran up to me and tugged on my arm. He turned to the interpreter and signed something.  He had signed that I should have a different name sign, that the other one he gave me wasn’t right.  He named me “Dancing
L” this time, and he did it with a smile, and then he hugged me.  


I was hooked right then and there; it was all I could do to keep from bursting into tears.   I can’t think of anything better than being able to use my skills to put a smile on the face of such a deserving child.
  


SNAP! Resources

Website – http://www.snapcolumbus.org

Blog – http://www.snapcolumbus.org/blog

Twitter -  http://www.twitter.com/SnapColumbus

Facebook Cause – http://apps.facebook.com/causes/143383?m=4a83263b 

Facebook Group – http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1076723658&ref=profile#/group.php?gid=58839111742

3 comments:

Media Child said...

Great story. I love to read about the human side of these "real" people that make up the group.
I will most defintely check them out. Many thanks for bringing tthem to my attention!

Kelly Gingery said...

Oy!

That story had me at "Hello".

Now I gotta find out where & when I can see a Snap! production. I'm gonna go check out your post on Columbus Underground right now.

Thanks for the heads up. :)

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