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Ballet scholarship offered

A local dance school hopes to help disadvantaged children experience ballet classes, and local businesses and individuals can help in the effort.

Allongé Dance Academy and Pilates Studio plans to donate half of the proceeds of the fundraiser directly to ForKids, said owner Amanda Short.

Amanda Short, owner and instructor at Allongé Dance Academy and Pilates Studio, helps Claire Taliaferro achieve the perfect form at the barre during class last year. Short is currently running a fundraiser to help offer a scholarship to a disadvantaged student.

Amanda Short, owner and instructor at Allongé Dance Academy and Pilates Studio, helps Claire Taliaferro achieve the perfect form at the barre during class last year. Short is currently running a fundraiser to help offer a scholarship to a disadvantaged student.

The other half of the proceeds will be used to fund a scholarship for a ForKids client, Short said. ForKids aids homeless families in Hampton Roads.

“We’d love to take our fundraiser and give back to the community,” said Short, who has operated a scholarship fund for regular students in need since she opened the school more than a year ago.

She said the scholarship for the ForKids child will cover lessons for a year as well as leotard, tights and other needs. It also will cover costumes for the recital if the student chooses to perform.

“We will not ask for any contributions from the family,” Short said.

Short said ballet can offer children who need consistency a valuable outlet.

“The great thing about ballet is the expectations are always the same,” Short said. “They never change. We thought it would be amazing to show the consistency and love of dance to kids who would likely never have that.”

She also said children can learn valuable lessons in ballet.

“The things that they learn in a ballet class go far beyond ballet technique,” she said. “Grace, self-respect, etiquette, dependability, teamwork — these are life skills they are getting in their ballet class.”

Short said individuals can donate to the fundraiser online. In addition, businesses that run an advertisement in the program for the June 18 performance will contribute with their advertising dollar. The deadline to place an advertisement is June 5; however, any funds that come in after that will roll into next year’s scholarship effort, Short said.

“This is something we hope to continue with ForKids,” she said. “I can’t think of a better place to reinvest in our community.”

For more information on the fundraiser or to donate, visit www.allongedanceacademy.com.