Dance team aimed at getting kids off streets is expanding - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Dance team aimed at getting kids off streets is expanding


A southeast Missouri dance group, aimed at getting children off the street and away from violence, is looking to expand.

The Bootheel Divas started in Sikeston, but has children joining from all over, including: Portageville, Lilbourn, Sikeston, Charleston, Cape Girardeau and more. 

On Saturday, some of the members camped out and performed at West Park Mall to get more people involved.

Bootheel Divas Head Coach Chandra Jones believes if these girls can focus their minds on dancing and academics, then it would not only help them turn the other cheek to violence but also influence others to do the same in their communities. 

"It benefits them a lot. We had some that were on the streets and now their drive is dancing," Jones said. "So it's benefiting them seeing there is something better for them than the streets."

Jones says with the violence in places like Sikeston, Charleston, Cape Girardeau, she wants to play a role in keeping kids away from it. 

So far, it seems to be working.

"All of these kids are getting into trouble and stuff. And now, getting them into the group is bringing them to a better place and something to do," Captain Rozlyn Mosby from Portageville said. 

After seeing the violence on TV and in their communities, one dance student feels something needs to change immediately. 

"In our later future, it is going to get more kids to follow their footsteps and the mistakes they're making. And I don't really like that," Mosby said. 

On Saturday, dancers aged 4 and older performed for more than 100 people.

Some people, like Julia Whitney, said she is in full support of this team.

Whitney, like Bootheel Divas, said it's important to give children a positive way to interact with others.

"You gotta give them a chance," Whitney said. "Every opportunity that you can give to a child, to do something positive, why wouldn't you want to do that."

Since starting the Bootheel Divas dance team, they have grown from a small group into a team that has won first in competitions in and out of state.

The divas next competition is on October 30 in Birmingham, AL. 

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