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Jeremy Martin-Weber hasn't added a story.
Hi everyone, I am Ophélia Martin-Weber, a 16 year old ballet dancer, high school sophomore, big sister to 5 super special girls, and when I dance, I feel alive and free. My 5 year dancing journey has involved training at four different studios, a dramatic move from Texas to Oregon, and sacrificing average looking feet for bulging bunions. This is my 3rd year to go to summer ballet intensives, an opportunity to advance my dance training and make connections for future training and possible career connections. This year I am planning on attending Next Generation Ballet’s intensive for two weeks in Tampa, FL, and Long Beach Ballet’s five week intensive, where three weeks are spent in California, and two weeks are training with Long Beach Ballet’s sister company, the Dresden Ballet, in Dresden, Germany. I chose these programs not only for their summer offerings but also considering the possibility of joining their year round program with connections to a company for a future job. Now being 16, I need to have an idea of next steps in my dance career and my dream of becoming a professional ballerina.
Last year’s fundraising efforts resulted in not only me meeting and surpassing my goal but I was able to give some of those funds to an other worthy cause, using my dance to speak make a difference in the world. Inspired by last year’s $1,000 raised for Grace School in A. Kunduro, India, I am committed to give again. This summer involves me visiting another country, and though I have some scholarship assistance with tuitions I have a goal of $9,180 for me to attend, and I promise to donate 10% percent whatever we raise to the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault plus whatever is raised above the cost of me attending these training programs. Donating to them would support their 24-hour crisis line and operating their hospital advocacy programs, plan a session for a family member so healing can continue at home, and providing an hour of much-needed play therapy and case management services for victims of sexual assault or abuse. I chose the Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault because as a sexual assault survivor myself, I know first hand the work they are doing is important and it was an organization similar to this that made a difference for me which has gone a long way in giving me the confidence to discover the healing in dance. It means a lot to me to support the work they are doing.
Attending these summer intensives and many more to come will help me improve my technique and necessary training for a future career in dance and the work of MOCSA gives me hope in the fight to end sexual assault. Any amount you can donate is appreciated, even a $1 helps me get closer to my goal.
Many thanks to my parents, sisters, and dance instructors for helping to make this all possible and to everyone that has believed in me along the way, for when I dance, I feel alive and free.
~ Ophélia Martin-Weber
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