STATEN ISLAND, NY—Eden II Programs, a not-for-profit agency serving children and adults with autism, choreographed a dance recital on Tuesday, November 19thatTrinity Lutheran Church in Stapleton. Thirty students from Eden II’s School Program performed and the presentation was directed by Eden II’s Dance Instructor, Mr. Kelly Gilmore. The theme was Dancing through the Decades.
Eden II’s Executive Director, Dr. Joanne Gerenser shared, “Thank you to Mr. Gilmore; his presentation of Dancing through the Decades was performed before members of Eden II and their family and friends. The the show was a big success. The students performed well and had a great time. The parents were very happy to see their kids having a good time singing and dancing.”
The show began in the 1920’s with a Fox Trot and Charleston. The program then ran through various decades and styles, including swing dancing, the Electric Slide, and freestyle dance.
Mr. Gilmore is owner and director of Dance Staten Island in Arrochar, and has been teaching dance to students at Eden II for over two years. This year, his efforts were rewarded with a Premier Art Fund Grant provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. DCA Grants support both individual Staten Island artists and community arts and cultural organizations in presenting art and cultural programming through projects and public presentations.
Mr. Gilmore stated, “This funding made a huge impact on our program by giving our dancers the chance to attend class twice a week throughout the year. As a teaching artist, I am committed to the continuation and growth of our dance program here at Eden II, and to offering more opportunities for these young performers to express themselves through music and dance.”
The grant is funded through the Greater New York Arts Development Fund (GNYADF) of New York City’s Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA). The grant program is administered locally by Staten Island Arts.
Mr. Gilmore continued, “The project not only builds upon the students dancing skills, it has also helped them in fulling their potential with regards to communication and social interaction. As their teacher, I am so proud of the accomplishments of our dancers.”
About Eden II Programs
Established in 1976, Eden II Programs began with just six students and one special education teacher. Today, the organization serves over 500 participants throughout the five boroughs and Long Island. The mission of Eden II Programs is to support people with autism throughout their lives to achieve their full potential through service, science, and passion. Eden II Programs provides a variety of services using the evidence-based principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA) to treat the specialized learning needs of individuals with autism spectrum disorders.
Currently, 170 individuals and families use Eden II’s full-day school program, preschool, special education teacher support services and special education itinerant teacher services in Staten Island. The adult day habilitation programs serve more than 100 individuals. Fifty-one adults with autism reside in seven adult homes located on Staten Island and Long Island. The Genesis School program and adult day program assist a total of 73 participants throughout Long Island. Hundreds benefit from a variety of other services, such as clinical assessments, community habilitation, respite, after-school and a variety of other specialized programs and family supports. To learn more visit eden2.org.