How Seyi Oluyole Uses Dance to Rescue Nigeria's Street Children
Seyi Oluyole uses dance to radically change children's lives in Lagos. Via DreamCatchersDance on YouTube.
In Ikoradu, a part of Lagos, Nigeria, "The parents here don't believe in education," says Seyi Oluyole, in a video for Great Big Story. "They just want their kids to just sell stuff." Instead of watching the cycle continue, Oluyole took it upon herself to change these children's lives in a radical way.
Her method of connecting with them? Dance.
Oluyole, who once slept on the streets as a child with her family, opened up her own home to provide a nurturing space for the kids to dance, study and live. As members of the Dream Catchers crew, they do conditioning, dance classes, rehearsals and performances, grooving mainly to Afrobeats.
Just watch them dance, and you'll immediately see the joy she's brought to these children's lives.
Oluyole also emphasizes education, prioritizing her students' school attendance. Now, they've gone from selling on the street for immediate survival to setting their sights on more promising futures. She notes that many of the children have since learned to read, and last month, Dream Catchers even performed at a TEDx conference.
My best running buddy was on my left. To my right, a total stranger with whom I'd suddenly become competitive. As the 15-person group headed into a two-minute push, the instructor got hyped, and the remix blasting Rihanna's "We Found Love" transitioned to "Smooth Criminal."