RACINE, Wis (CBS 58) — A nonprofit dance academy in Racine needs your help to make a dream come true.
The Sweatshop Movement has between 70 and 150 members at any one time.
In March 2020, just five days before the world was shut down by the COVID-19 pandemic, their dancers placed for the very first time in a major national hip hop dance competition series called “Monster’s Dance” at their event. in Chicago.
They placed with a routine and as a result were offered a fully paid offer to compete in LA in the National Finals of the competition series, referred to as “LA Finale”. Due to the pandemic, the LA final was canceled in person and they were also forced to cancel their exciting plans to travel to LA.
They competed virtually and even got a national virtual title in their category as well as the entertainment award for the competition! But they all missed the chance to get to Los Angeles.
In April 2021, they again placed in Chicago, this time without a paid bid to compete, and while they planned to attend, they were ultimately unable to make the trip due to capacity restrictions during the LA final. They were unable to fundraise and get tickets to the event in time, with far fewer seats available.
In April 2022, they qualified twice to compete in Los Angeles. They finally plan to travel with 16 youngsters from Racine to compete in Los Angeles from August 4-7. This is a huge opportunity for their Racine children, an opportunity that no one before them at Racine has been given. However, it is also a huge financial undertaking for the children of the program.
They’re starting a GoFundMe to help raise money to offset the cost of the kids’ trip to Los Angeles.
It is a non-profit program, staffed primarily by “underserved” youth of color and low-income families. Many of their dancers are close family members or friends of the recent tragedies of gun violence in Racine.
Youth in the program train 4-12 hours per week, meet academic requirements throughout the year, mentor each other, and develop a strong fellowship while participating in our program.