The Black Lives Matter Movement has demanded introspection and change at personal, institutional, and global levels. Joy of Motion is not exempt from that introspection and change. We are committed and eager to create a space that is welcoming to and accepting of everyone.
Here are the first steps that we have taken:
- Our systems for listening and understanding the needs of our community are being critically assessed and overhauled by staff, board, faculty, and volunteers. It is vital that if/when issues arise that you know: where to turn for help, that your question or concern will be heard and understood, that it will be addressed quickly, and that there is a reliable avenue for recourse and restorative justice. This is a top priority for our institution in the coming fiscal year.
- We have established committees of staff, faculty, and volunteers on institutional policies, strategic direction, and programming. The recommendations from those committees will be instrumental in helping to shape Joy of Motion’s future.
- The committees are working to create a collaborative path forward that re-imagines and rebuilds the organization. Dr. Nyama McCarthy-Brown of The Ohio State University is leading anti-racism training, and DC-based dance and cultural equity advocate Stephen Clapp is helping to facilitate committee meetings.
- We are currently in the process of re-vamping our class schedule to give more emphasis to non-western dance forms. A schedule of virtual classes will be announced around August 15!
- The board has committed to refreshing its membership and is actively seeking to be more diverse and representative of our community. They are currently accepting applications for new Directors. If you would like to consider applying, please request a copy of our Information Packet for Prospective Board Members at email@example.com.
- Two rotating liaison seats for faculty members are being established by the board. This is to create an opportunity for faculty to provide oversight on institutional direction and have a voice in the room when decisions are being made. Faculty will also have input on the selection of new leadership.
- Our Interim Co-Executive Directors, Krystal Odom and Elizabeth Watson, are diligently working to help bring the organization to a stable, solvent position so that a permanent Executive Director would be excited to come on board and guide us into the future.
We are actively working to be an anti-racist space that celebrates Black voices and dancers. We hope that through this work we can begin to heal as a community and create an organization that is truly for everyone. We feel energized and excited by this path forward and we are incredibly grateful for the generous community members and faculty who are helping us to achieve this vision.
Here is how YOU can get involved:
We welcome your input! Due to the volume of emails we receive, we may be unable to respond to everyone directly, but we will try our best to address your concerns!
As we move forward, we will provide you with information about the actionable and measurable steps that we are taking to begin to repair our organization. At the same time, while this period of collaboration and introspection is vital to the holistic and meaningful work that we have ahead of us, we cannot wait to start dancing with you again. Watch your email around August 15 to see what will be offered this fall!