RDDC is an international NGO that runs dance and educational programs for street children and underserved youth in post-conflict and developing countries. Using a three-part model, RDDC prepares street children to re-integrate and succeed in the formal education system while gaining valuable job skills through vocational training.
In Phase I, street children improve 11 cognitive skills through a standardized dance curriculum. In Phase II, children acquire job skills through vocational training (IT or English Language). In Phase III, top performing students are sponsored to attend local boarding schools – thereby exiting life on the street and giving youth the power to advance their own lives.
Vision: Improving Children’s Lives
RDDC aims to significantly improve the lives of children and youth in its focus countries (Bosnia-Herzegovina, Guinea, Rwanda) by equipping participating youth with a skill or knowledge base that they can leverage in the future. Dance, found at the core of each program, is used to help the children develop cognitive learning skills (ranging from memorization to retention/recall of information). RDDC trains a few of the most talented and committed students to become dancers or teachers directly involved with RDDC programs, but ultimately, serves the vast majority of students through the educational training associated with each program.
RDDC is a 501(c)3 organization based in the United States. Working closely with international partners and RDDC field staff, the organization has run ongoing youth dance projects in three focus countries : Rwanda, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Guinea. Each program is based on a standardized model created by RDDC and then tailored to the specific needs of the at-risk population being served. Starting in 2014, RDDC prioritized its program in Rwanda.
The present international orientation of RDDC is the company’s second growth phase. The company was created in 2005 with a focus on developing original, full-length contemporary ballets based on famous literary works, significant historical events and modern social issues. Read more...
- Train The Trainers
September 24, 2014
Since 2011, RDDC has been running an annual program called “Train The Trainers” in Rwanda. This past August, the annual program was held again. It was divided into two categories: training RDDC/Rwandan dance teachers in contemporary technique; and training Rwandan staff in fundraising and grant writing.
The goal of Train The Trainers is to improve the results achieved by our local staff through RDDC’s different activities that serve vulnerable kids.
This year, the dance training introduced new elements of contemporary dance technique to RDDC teachers in Rwanda. Contemporary will serve as an additional genre of dance for our teachers to use while working with diverse groups of children. In this training, we also examined how the methodology used in dance classes carries over to the IT training, which is also offered by RDDC to street youth. Together, this provides a systematic approach to behavioral change. Special attention was given to the eleven cognitive skills targeted by RDDC and considered essential to re-integrate children into the formal education system.
My team, the street youth and I are deeply grateful to Caitlyn Casson and Grace French for their energy and time invested in this year’s Train The Trainers. This was their first trip to Rwanda, and they both did an amazing job!