MPACT

MPACT (Moving Parents and Children Together) was founded in 2001 to bring parent-child dance classes to families in the Alameda County Dependency Court and child welfare systems. Parent-child dance classes have proven to be beneficial for families under duress:

  • They provide families with a safe, comfortable environment to play and dance together
  • They facilitate the parent-child bond through relationship-based dance curriculum
  • They help parents gain confidence in their ability to interact physically with their children

Through MPACT services, partner agencies find ways to realize their goals by integrating dance and play, as well as embodied parent education, into their programs.

MPACT services:

  • Ongoing Saturday morning classes at local libraries & community centers
  • Primary Partnerships with Solid Foundation and Project Pride
  • Bridge Classes: one-time or short series of classes introducing the power of dance to agencies working with families in the child welfare system
  • Professional Development (PD) & Consultation to those seeking to build MPACT-like programs
  • Internships: Two-year PD opportunity for teaching artists to learn how to bring relationship-based dance to their communities.

MPACT is for:

  • Families who are in the process of reunification, broadly defined to include separations due to court mandates, substance abuse, domestic violence, immigration, homelessness or other situations.
  • Dance teaching artists and other practitioners seeking to learn how to bring MPACT classes to their communities.
  • Agencies seeking to augment their services with relationship/play oriented activities for families to engage in together. Agencies can access MPACT for referrals, program design, professional development or collaboration.

2015 funding for MPACT is provided by Bernard E. & Alba Witkin Charitable Foundation, The Clorox Family Foundatiom Foundation, and Dizzy Feet Foundation.

MPACT PD
In order to fulfill our mission of bringing dance to all children, Luna provides professional development opportunities to dance teaching artists, early childhood educators, social workers and other practitioners who wish to learn how to develop and teach relationship-based dance curriculum. Our Professional Learning component provides workshops at all levels.

We also offer a 2-year internship program for those seeking to commit to an extended course of study. Two interns are accepted annually. For more information, contact nng@lunadanceinstitute.org.

Building Programs in Your Community
Our current funding restricts MPACT’s direct service to Alameda County. Our partner agencies are Solid Foundation (Oakland) and Project Pride (Oakland), both serving women in residential settings and their children. A typical partnership includes multiple sessions of weekly parent-child dance classes, kids-only dance classes with parent observation/education, professional development for agency staff, embodied parent education workshops, evaluation and planning. Scholarships to Luna’s Studio Lab are provided for MPACT families and partner graduates.

In order to extend our reach, we offer consultation and program development services to agencies and organizations across the country. Agencies hire us to help them assess their communities’ needs and resources for such a program, to identify and train dance teaching staff, to develop curriculum and to provide a step-by-step, individualized strategic plan for building a sustainable, evolving relationship-based program through the art of dance. Examples of our work in this area include: placing interns in agencies to teach a series of parent-child dance classes in Southern Alameda County; providing consultation and professional development to a dance company in Flagstaff, Arizona; developing a training model for dance teaching artists in Southern California and partnering with Asian Women’s Shelter, San Francisco to bring more dance to homeless, immigrant families in the API community network. For more information, contact nng@lunadanceinstitute.org.