The Rose Hill group have been enjoying The M Word with enthusiasm and ‘infectious’ energy. And a particular fondness for freestyling.

“I like the freestyle… because the freestyle is really cool; we get to share [with] everyone our different dances and how we like dancing.”

Eden, 10, has developed an appreciation for the freedom teacher Emma-Jane has given him. Freedom to express himself and transform the moves he learns into his own. In agreement, Lexi, 13, adds “I like learning routines because it helps me get the skills to make my own.”

“My Rose Hill group has so much energy from the boys,” Emma-Jane says, ” and that energy is something really infectious and rubs off on new people that join the group. They’re able to stand up at the end of each session and share their work and create their own moves and they want to share that with others and that’s a real achievement for the project.”

The classes at Rose Hill are attended mainly by boys, and with this energy and dynamic energy comes a unique experience for all involved.

“I think what’s really nice is the differences between each group. In Rose Hill we have a predominantly boys group and the other groups so far are girls. It’s really nice to see the differences from each area and work with a whole heap of different young people.

“For me it’s a group that’s really inclusive, the environment is very safe, and young people feel supported.”

The M Word’s mission is to provide a safe space for exploration, as well as allow young people to grow.

“I think as weeks go on and young people regularly attend you do see an increase in confidence,” adds Emma-Jane. “Young people are talking to new young people perhaps they don’t go to school with, and being more open to sharing their own moves, thoughts and opinions. And that’s a really big sign for me they’re growing in confidence from the sessions, and feel safe and supported in the atmosphere we’re creating.”

And a real testament to his growing confidence are the words of a giggling Eden. “I would like to do more freestyle so everyone knows what I’ve got.”

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