Alvin Ailey Camp Baltimore helping kids get skills they need to succeed

Posted at 5:31 AM, Feb 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-21 06:53:03-05

The Alvin AileyCamp Baltimore is gearing up for it's fifth summer at Towson University.

The program inspires kids 11-14-years-old through dance, art and personal development classes.

"They work on self esteem issues, they talk about nutrition, they talk about bullying, all the things that are going on on the internet, so that they are able to work through and get tools so that they can succeed in the future," Director of AileyCamp Baltimore Linda-Denise Fisher-Harrell said.

The camp last six weeks and this year Fisher-Harrell can only take 64 kids. She said it doesn't matter what dance skills they have, but more that they wouldn't have the opportunity to participate in a similar program otherwise.

Everything in this program is funded through donations and grants, which keeps Fisher-Harrell busy throughout the year, but is invaluable for the children who get into the camp.

"Getting dance instruction, which means ballet, modern , jazz, West African, personal development, creative communication which is art. I feed them breakfast lunch, snack, they get leotards, tights, ballet slippers, t shirts, shorts, you name it. I even have bus tickets to get them here," Fisher-Harrell said.

The camp is modeled after choreographer and activist Alvin Ailey who believed dance was for everyone and enriches people's lives.

Fisher-Harrell is collecting applications now and said interviews will happen in March. Her students have gone on to be very successful. Several attend local dance colleges, while others are on Broadway.

Next year, she hopes to have enough money to support 100 kids in the camp.

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