Welcome to the Bija Beat blog. Bija Beat is the marriage of fitness and artistic exploration, engaging students on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels. A portion of each class fee funds transformative arts education programming for children in schools through our collaboration with Celebrate The Beat (CTB) and National Dance Institute (NDI).
I wanted to take this opportunity to share a recent story that's just one of many examples of why this work is so important to me and what makes it so rewarding...
Last week, our board member Margaret Wood and her husband Glen hosted a beautiful fundraiser for CTB at their stunning home in Denver, Colorado. Fourteen student 'all stars' from CTB’s Summer Institute were bused by Alan the driver. Over the past year, when Alan took us on other adventures, he had been more than a little grumpy and seemed less than enchanted with life.
While the children were upstairs preparing for the show, a few minutes before the guests arrived, Alan surprised us by walking through the front door. (Usually the bus drivers need to stay with their bus, but he had found a parking spot). Of course we gave him a warm welcome and encouraged him to join us. As the guests poured in, Alan stayed, chatted with other guests and watched as the children danced with unabated joy and passion - and as is the norm for these performances, infecting the whole room with hope and love.
As the evening drew to a close, our constituents eloquently and passionately invited the guests in attendance to support the incredible work CTB is doing. BJ - the principal of Kearney Middle School where we are running our summer programs - shared that for the first time she is hearing her students speak about their FUTURES, how she has seen breathtaking transformations and how the children now stand with confidence instead of cowering.
Shortly afterward, our hostess Margaret stepped to the front of the room to announce to us that our bus driver Alan had asked for a donation envelope, telling her that as a child he had longed for music lessons, but his family couldn't afford them.
Alan thanked Margaret and off he went.
Tracy + The Bija Beat Family