Domestic abuse, rape, sexual abuse, slavery, trafficking - these dreadful traumas have a devastating effect on a woman's sense of self, on her confidence, her self esteem and her body image. Now Company of Dreams is bringing joy to shattered lives through the surprising art of bellydance. This unique and inspiring programme of classes, held in refuges, safe houses and support groups is bringing happiness to women who have suffered so much, and helping them regain confidence & self esteem
Many of the women are living in terror for their lives, having escaped from slavery, violent partners and abusers. Living in secret safe houses and hostels in the UK, they are isolated, far from home, and dealing with the long term effects of the abuse they've suffered. Self esteem, body image, self confidence, self belief are all shattered. Many have experienced no simple fun for years, if ever. Troubled by flashbacks and feelings of shame, it's hard for them to focus or move on.
Bellydance has a unique ability to help women feel better about themselves and their bodies. The movements feel beautiful and womanly and there's enormous joy gained from dancing in a group to pleasurable music. Taught in a safe space, amongst other women like themselves, our classes are helping women accept their bodies, develop confidence and rebuild self esteem through positive feedback. Dancing also takes their minds away from their terrible memories, and enables them to laugh together.
The dance is empowering for women who have had their power taken from them and has great benefits for their physical and mental health and wellbeing. Much current research is demonstrating the unique ability of dance to help release troubling thoughts and improve focus and concentration. Remarkably, these benefits can continue long after the dance class has finished. Improved self esteem and improved ability to concentrate can significantly affect these women's prospects for life and work.