Fun inclusive dance course supports children with disabilities

Last updated: Thursday, 14 December 2023

Children's models

Amandla dancing.

Evelina London’s community physiotherapy team, part of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, have hosted their first-ever dance sessions for children with physical disabilities.

The new 7-week course, which launched in November, encouraged Evelina London patients to try dance lessons in an inclusive environment. The aim was to help children increase their fitness and strength, whilst also building their confidence.

Amandla Poswa, 7, from Lambeth was among those who put on his dancing shoes. He has cerebral palsy and has been an Evelina London patient his whole life. Although he has regular physiotherapy to help build up strength and balance, he hadn’t previously tried dance lessons.

His mum, Anisha, said:

Amandla likes to dance and music has always been something he’s into. He was more than excited to join when he heard it was a dance class that he could participate in and he’d be not be so far behind other children in class.

Prior to joining the dance sessions, Amandla and his parents took part in information sessions provided by the physiotherapy team about inclusive sports, and also attended the annual sports day taster session hosted in August.

Anisha said:

I hope from these sessions he will feel included, empowered, and really just enjoy himself.

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Amandla dancing.

The free sessions were funded by Evelina London Children’s Charity to improve access to sports and other physical activities, and enhance the health and wellbeing of children and young people in south east London. They were hosted in Sunshine House in Camberwell, one of Evelina London’s two dedicated child development centres.  

They were run by dance practitioner Veronika Koleva, who tailors sessions to children with special educational needs and disabilities. Veronika said:

The sessions help improve coordination, physical strength, and spatial awareness, whilst also creating a positive emotional experience through dance and play. Children are also bonding and starting to work as a team which is incredible to observe.

In the final session, the children wowed their families and Evelina London staff by performing their new moves. 

Melissa Sharrad, community physiotherapist said:

It’s amazing to see how much the children have learnt over the course of the sessions, and how much fun they are having together with their peers. We hope it sparked a love of dancing, and they will continue to keep dancing in the future.


These dance sessions are part of a larger programme of work we are doing as a team to support children with disabilities to access disability inclusive sport in the community. We have run parent and child workshops to highlight the important of exercise and moving our bodies to stay healthy. We are really lucky to have some fantastic inclusive sports clubs across Southwark and Lambeth.

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Veronika leading the dance sessions.

By funding sessions like these, Evelina London Children’s Charity helps to create incredible moments for children and their families. This Christmas, the Charity has launched its ‘Evelina’s Incredibles’ fundraising campaign. Donations will help to create everyday incredible moments that make a child’s stay in hospital less daunting, and to provide invaluable opportunities for children to access health and wellbeing support across the local community. Support the campaign by visiting the Evelina London Children’s Charity website.

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