What People Are Saying About WD4H

! 9 Kungabu dance danna kat Fran Collin 0894 slide2017

Laura DeHaven: Thank you so much for the warm welcome, for offering this opportunity to dance and benefit the projects in Rwanda. This class is one of the best parts of my life (and I have a rich, wonderful life!). I always look forward to coming to class and find it soulful, uplifting, joyous and fun. All parts of me are so happy to be involved with World Dance for Humanity!”

Brittany Hess: “Thank you for your energy and bright attitude. At each class I walk away lighter and more empowered. It has truly been a joy learning the ‘Break the Chain’ routine and sharing space with the World Dance community.”

Peter Haslund: “World Dance is worth the effort for a simple reason:  it works.  It affects real people in a significant way, and it bears witness to the fact that despite all the ‘noise,’ we all live on the same small planet and we need to help each other.”

Marcia Warrecker: “Thanks so much, Janet, for always making me happy…even when I come with the weight of world on my shoulders! After a couple of steps, I’m light-hearted once more!

Yuki York: “I attended my 2nd World Dance class tonight. I really liked everybody welcoming a newbie like me, and the positive vibe. I had a good time. Thank you!”

Michelle Pasini: I am so impressed by the selection of beautiful music, the variety of different dance styles, and mixture of balance and grateful meditation at the end of class. Classes are so rejuvenating. We benefit from Janet’s lifetime of dance study and her warm, unbridled enthusiasm for everything she does and expressed to everyone who walks through that door. I came for the exercise, returned for the community, and was compelled by the cause!”

Annetta Patrick: World Dance for Humanity is unique because it offers so much more than just dance instruction. It is an exercise class, it is a local community outreach support, it is the means of sustenance for 8,000+ Rwandans, it is a sisterhood of like-minded women, it fuels our hearts and our minds. We give, but what we get in return is immeasurable. There is nothing else like it!

Melitta Haslund: ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.’ (Margaret Mead)  World Dance for Humanity is just such a group – bold, brilliant, a lot of fun! Truly, it is life-saving to all involved. Goats, cows, education and small business change lives for people across the seas. For those of us dancing, it is meaning and effective outreach and friendship that fills our lives. Thank you Janet, Genevieve and the Board for making that possible!

Marc Van Strydonck: Dear Janet, Since our chance meeting in Rwanda three and a half years ago, I have followed and been amazed by the work WD4H has accomplished helping people going from being completely destitute…to men, women and children filled with hope and better futures. Your work is inspiring and shows that the universal language of dance combined with the generosity and commitment of your group can achieve wonders. It is a privilege to witness your achievements from afar. Very best wishes to you for the new year.

Pamela Albert: In my short time here in Santa Barbara I feel so blessed to have found a group of women who are passionate about giving back to the community and world. Not only does WD4H give locally but they help families abroad in ways that are uplifting and profoundly life changing. I joined WD4H to learn and dance to Thriller and ended up with a wonderful group of friends dedicated to helping others. Wow!

David Kaplan: As donor to WD4H, I am always impressed how much the organization is able to achieve from each dollar contributed. They are a small organization, but when these type of entities are run well (and this group is run well), the return on philanthropic investment for the donor concerning real and measurable result surpasses anything one could achieve through larger, more bureaucratic, top heavy organizations.

Ruth Alpert: As a getting-older professional dancer, this class is perfect for me. I can no longer take the modern and ballet classes that I love (I have a foot, a hip, a neck, oy!) Janet’s class is right on the borderline of dance class and ‘just boogey’: it still has enough form, enough lyrical and expressive movement, activates my old dancer mind of learning combinations quickly — and adds the aerobic, all-out fun of rocking out to great music and not having to be technically precise. Plus Janet herself, who could inspire a rock to start jiggling! And what a cause!

Sharon Kearin and the San Diego World Dancers: We are all so proud to be a part of such a wonderful organization that helps so many women. Our “breath” connects us all to you and to the women in Rwanda and our dance is the language we use to offer up our love and care and concern for others. Let the Friday morning Dance parties begin again in 2017 – we’ll be working on raising funds for 6th cow!

Robin Stampe: Another great year of dancing! Janet offers wonderful, high energy classes with an impressive range of styles and music. You’ll love it!  Dance, make friends, help others. I’m a happier person. Can’t imagine life without World Dance! Love and Thanks!

Justin Bisengimana: I am so lucky to work with World Dance for Humanity! You are people who go beyond material donations, by giving of yourselves. Thank you for sacrificing your time, energy, talents and resources, and serving the communities so wholeheartedly. It’s all about heart, and being passionate about the work. World Dance For Humanity is the best partner I have ever had. Our five years working together have been filled with joy. You have been inspirational to me in so many ways. You always energize me and motivate me to keep on good track. You are playing a significant role in the development of our Rwandan communities. What you are doing in this ” broken-hearted” country speaks for itself. Your contribution towards the rebuilding of this nation is priceless. You have given the communities a story of hope to tell, and a voice with which to tell this story.

Olga Herrera Pinal: I first came to World Dance to experience exercise and dancing from different cultures. I got what I asked for and MORE. I was invited to go with Janet and 10 others to Rwanda…WOW! I experienced dancing with people with open arms and hearts, visual beauty, music…that would burn in my heart forever. I am so grateful to be among women who share the same direction for humanity. The word Synchronicity comes to mind, events with “meaningful coincidences.” When I say I belong to World Dance for Humanity, the 6 degrees of separation rule comes into play. Janet has created a ripple in the pond and it radiates out into the world, just recently I have talked with people that know Janet, my aunt who worked in Direct Relief, a SB County Fire Captain who worked with the Search and Rescue Dogs, Patricia Braggs whom donated the grocery bags, Evie from Friends of Woni who gave us the opportunity to dance with their group at Marjorie Luke Theater, and the list goes on…thank you Janet for being our Avatar.

Chantal Kubwimana, Rwanda Education Coordinator: I just want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for all you do. I appreciate how you are powerful women, patient, helping poverty peoples from survival to the better health. Thank you again for giving to the people in need without expecting any return. May God Bless you. We love you.

Dany Rukundo, Assistant Program Director: Today after looking at photos, videos, reports of three years working with you, my head up, light hand on hair thinking about WD4H, Janet, Justin and our community. Thanks Justin who was the first to speak out for those who are not able, Thanks Janet to be there as spokeswoman and one who testify all above I am saying, Thanks WD4H for supporting our beneficiaries. Onward! Biracyaza!

Debra Geiger, WD4H Board President: To World Dance for Humanity’s world-wide community, Thank You for your support in 2016 – we hope you will continue to be part of our work in 2017! We celebrate all people and support all neighbors in need, regardless of their address. As Michelle Obama says, “You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once, but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have. History has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.”

Starr Siegele: Happy New Year! Good courage on our mutual quest to make better lives in Rwanda and Uganda. Larry and I understand your mission & all the difficulties opposed in East Africa. We are gratified knowing World Dance can meet its goal for education in 2016. This is building hope for the future in Rwanda, in East Africa: New fresh voices, educated, intelligent with power for change in their world – and ours.

Marcia Warrecker: Seeing my student Irakoze’s smiling face and hearing his happy voice during our Skype with Rwanda made my heart sing! What a wonderful future we will have when he and his fellow leaders-in-training step on out onto this world’s stage. Africa has already given us great souls like Desmond Tutu, Nelson Mandela, and Wangari Masaii. So glad there’s more bright and beautiful youths waiting in the wings! Please let Justin know how much I appreciate his untiring endeavors.

2016

Nalena Rieder: Thank you for all you do, World Dance for Humanity. I appreciate being a part of such a tremendous gift you and the organization are spearheading and the way you are changing lives.

Danna Mead: When I stumbled upon World Dance three years ago, I knew then it was going to change my life – and it has.

Grace Stanley, WD4H Intern: I just wanted to let you know from the bottom of my heart how grateful and honored I am to be a part of World Dance. Watching all of you powerful women gathered around that WD4H Board meeting the other day was so inspiring. I can’t believe I get the chance to see the inner workings of a type of work that I so desperately want to be a part of! You are giving me the experience and inspiration that will help me through my whole entire career. I just wanted to say thanks again for allowing me to be a part of it all!

Arlene Satterlee: Thanks for sending us to dance heaven.

Lola Paredes: Dancing is fun but dancing for a cause is legendary. Thank you all WD4H dancers for welcoming me. Your honest dedication has inspired me.

Becky Spadoro: I’m very thankful for World Dance. My health is better because of you – body bones, mind, and soul. Really appreciate dancing with our community!

Michelle Gasperini Pasini: I saw the compilation video of your trip to Rwanda this year. Simply awe inspiring! The video is wonderful and cause is so worthy. The excitement and gratitude comes across beautifully. I’m humbled to know you all (or at least just getting to know you). What a group!

Amanda Emsland (from the beautiful Kootenay Mountains in Canada): I know that everyone who dances with World Dance is special and has a huge commitment to humanity and a giving heart. World Dance is such an amazing thing, it’s a living, breathing organism. I have been feeling so grateful for my time in Santa Barbara with World Dance, in Rwanda, and from afar. I am becoming more and more clear about what fits who I am and how I want to be in the world. There are a few wonderful and bright places where I really feel like I am being myself and being accepted, World Dance is one of those few. It’s more than the dancing and it’s more than the giving, it’s some kind of spirit connection. You created something that embodies an ideal for me and all I had to do was show up. I think of you all often and wonder when I’ll be there again but you are like a family to me and have a big space right in my heart.

Elsie Dunin, Dance Ethnologist: World Dance for Humanity, with your team in Rwanda, is making remarkable inroads toward individual self-esteem (especially with forgotten/ignored females) via an embodied understanding of each other. Yes, you feel the urgency to nudge, to bridge understandings of life with the basic needs of Rwanda’s women, and you have truly found a niche with language-free common body experiences of dancing – to move and shake up human sensibilities with your WD4H projects. Heart-felt congratulations on what you have accomplished, and sincere best wishes on your continuing health and energy to continue to link humanity through dancing bodies — making a positive cross-cultural understanding in lives.

Aaron Strockis: I really enjoyed myself at the Rwanda evening – it was great to meet everyone that is involved in the effort. I am completely humbled to be a part of such an amazing group of people. The compassion and commitment shown by each of the members is truly inspiring. Thousands of miles removed from the economic, social and psychological aftermath of the genocide and living in relative comfort, I think many Americans in general tend to lose an appreciation for the crises that face communities in other parts of the world. That’s why I was drawn to your organization in the first place, and that’s why it is so important to gain a first-hand perspective of our efforts through photography and film. I was floored by the footage from the trip. The messages of thanks from our beneficiaries and the warm reciprocation from the communities you visited were especially moving. Your organization truly deserves immense appreciation not only from those in Rwanda that directly benefit from World Dance, but also those in America who are indirectly impacted by your selfless efforts, myself included. I consider WD4H a role model for how to solve problems in the world for those in need. I recognize that my role in the organization is fairly limited compared to the endless time and energy that your team dedicates to make World Dance for Humanity a reality. Nevertheless, I am completely honored to be able to contribute in some small way to such a worthy cause. Thank you again for a great evening.

Katie Blakey: World Dance for Humanity has truly embraced me as one of its own. I really felt the love today when I walked in and the teacher and founder, Janet (the one in the pink at the end), had some Greek clarinet music ready for me! Granted, this weekend is Greek Festival in Santa Barbara, but as soon as she found out I play clarinet she was all over incorporating dances and songs with my instrument. She’s also given me a perfectly small platform in which to share my love of meditation, chanting and yoga. I realized today how my main trainings thus far, music and yoga, have culminated and been cultivated by this really wonderful group of ladies. I’m really grateful to have you as part of my California family.

Deidre Sklar: I especially appreciate that even as the dancing and gifting and traveling grow, World Dance stays personal. It is still about getting together to dance in Santa Barbara, visiting people in Rwanda, and giving what’s needed.  They sent $90,000 in aid last year, but there is no corporate feel to it; rather, there are names and faces, stories and images.

Bruce Lebel: WD4H embodies “authentic expression of core self” with a combination of dance, service and global organization that is dazzling. Brilliant!

Juanita Johnson: WD4H is a comfort. It’s a small yet powerful commitment to what we CAN do through our close connection with people we’ve come to care about in a very authentic way.

Jamie Cornejo: We all really appreciate you letting us crash your class! We all had so much fun and couldn’t stop talking about how great it is that you are dancing for a cause! What a memorable experience.

Jayne Johann: I’m humbled by all you do and am hoping to be a part of WD4H for a long time.  Class means a great deal to me. It is my birthday today and I told my husband that the thing I most wanted to do today was go to World Dance.

Loriann Mastromarino: I am so honored to be a part of your work that helps lots of women and children get out of poverty. Thank you for feeding body, mind, and soul through World Dance. It is a gift to me.

Amanda Elmsland: I have been watching what’s happening from afar and it always blows me away at what you have created and all that it has accomplished.

Juanita Johnson: So much commitment to so much good. I love World Dance and I’m grateful to you for bringing dance to my life.

MJ Feiner: Blessings are bestowed when chance and preparation collide!

Marcia Warrecker: History will continue to record the phenomenon of violence against women, unless women disobey those who deny them their freedom. A vision for the future could be a worldwide campaign of civil disobedience against violators of human rights led by strong-willed, highly- disciplined, diplomatic, astute, and loving people. I see it starting with my dance teacher, one step at a time! Thanks for your inspirational leadership in making our world a better place.

Genevieve Feiner: I could not be more blessed to work alongside such a phenomenal team of inspired, passionate, and loving people, both in Rwanda and in Santa Barbara! Thank you so much for letting me be a part of this. Love to you all

Micheline Perry: There aren’t enough words in the universe to express my appreciation for all the hard work each and everyone of you do. So a simple Thank You will have to do. So THANKS YOU  so very, very, much.

Connie Wernet: Thank you for the thoughtful tribute to my mom today in class.  It was such a healing time for me, to cry with tears of joy and sadness and dance at the same time. So many have been brought together by World Dance – a community of kindness, generosity of spirit, and love. I am grateful to be part of this group.

Peter Haslund: OK, here is the question of the day: How can so many people have so much fun doing so much good and bringing so much joy to so many people who truly benefit from these efforts? Diana Replogle-Purinton in response to Peter: Thank you for the question of the day.  The answer, the power of music & dance has no limitations.  Lose yourself in the rhythm & the moment & let the happiness shine to all those near.

Marcia Warrecker: I started to warm up to the idea that joy was available to everyone, including me, when you taught me how to dance to Break the Chain! Joy comes visiting on a daily basis now. Thanks so much Janet!  This is from my daughter-in-law, Taryn: ‘Thank you for your thoughtful gifts to the boys. It led to great conversations with the boys about giving and humanity…’

Cindy Shuart: I just finished watching this video and the tears are rolling down my cheeks!  What a beautiful thing that you and your friends have created.  I am so delighted to be just a very small part of this most meaningful connection!  Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Mary Thompson: Sponsoring a Rwandan student is the best use of my donation I can think of. I truly believe that education is the path to a better world.

Becky Spadoro: I thank God for the gift of dance, music, community and giving that comes through World Dance! Thank you for showering us with love and all the effort you put toward us and Rwanda.

Juanita Johnson: I’m so blessed to be among people like all of you, who believe in the power of giving “heart to heart”. Thank you, Peter and all who are the World Dance Community. And thank you, Janet, for understanding the “undreamed of possibilities” of the power of women dancing together. We are World Dance, changing lives one step at a time, because of your vision and dedication. A blessing indeed.

Marcia Warrecker: I received this text from my daughter-in-law, Janis. ‘Hi Marcia, Merry Christmas! I am glad you enjoyed your gifts. I was very impressed with your Rwanda giving to those in need in honor of our children, great choice.’

Peter Haslund: ‘Tis Christmas, and I suspect that many of us are wondering what this commercial gift-giving is all about, especially when we know that there are children in Rwanda who need our help.  So this year, in an effort to pass along what I believe to be the genuine spirit of the season, I’d like to contribute $500 to the education fund in the name of my 4 grandchildren. here, we take education for granted.  We have so much that somehow, it is so easy to forget that others are not so fortunate.  So many others can only wait their turn.  Perhaps it comes; perhaps it doesn’t.  World Dance for Humanity is there to make it happen, and in so doing, we are helping to break the cycle of ongoing poverty.  This next generation of Rwandans might just make it, in part, because of our efforts.

Maribel Gallarza: What an incredible experience for the Vieja students and teachers and the Rwanda students. It is one thing to know that we are doing something good for ourselves and our Rwanda family and another to see them, speak with them and see how like us they are.  Every student looked so happy and the teacher was really into it.  We know how happy this encounter makes us all – this is our bonus when we give from our heart.

Peter Haslund: A glance through the montage of World Dance photos cannot help but bring joy to the viewer.  So much happiness to so many people though the application of simple gestures of humanity, of simply caring. One human being embracing another. What a difference that can make!

Juanita Johnson: Yesterday’s class was a delight, but I feel that way each time we all dance together. I like to be behind you to see all the small, subtle movements you add to a dance. It’s magical….all of us sharing the love of dance and music.

Barbara Williams: Wow, I don’t know what to say – I’m still smiling. My days of dancing for therapy is working. Thank you Janet, WD4H instructor for encouraging me to smile and for everything you do.

Marica Heller: Having a good time in New Zealand. I traveled through northern India for three weeks in November. It was a wonderful, enlightening journey and, I must say, that because of World Dance, whenever we were attending a cultural event that included dancing and the performers asked members of the audience to get up and dance with them, I was the first one to join in! That is not something that would have happened before I started taking your classes.

Lauren Martin: This class is truly so much fun and dancing makes working out that much better so thank you!

Christine Holland: Hello Janet, Thanks for your nice follow-up and welcome. I really enjoyed the class. The women attending seem delightful, and you are a great inspiration to a beginner as well as the more experienced participant.

Leslie Armstrong: Dear Janet, Thank you again for all the information you continue to share with me about your wonderful organization. I am impressed that 100% of the donations to your nonprofit go to local and international projects. Successful assistance exists when it matches the needs of those you are reaching. World Dance for Humanity has done just that. I grew up in Africa and I understand how challenging it is to get foreign monies actually to those in need. Because of the invaluable relationships you have established in Rwanda, you are able to get all these funds directly to the people whose lives will be immeasurably improved with your support. I’m am excited to dance with you knowing that each step we take helps others. Continued success.

August Vanderbeek: Hi Janet, Thank you for your emails. I always get such a positive hit from them. I think what you are doing is fantastic. More energy to you! I always send you my best wishes with your work and dancing.

Loriann Mastromarino: I had a great time and can’t wait to return. Your class fed my body, mind, and soul in a way that I have been searching for. Thanks!

Maribel Gallarza: This class is so important to my well-being, emotionally, physically and mentally. The different routines exercise my brain as well as my body. It was a godsend after my knee replacement surgery and made it possible to regain mobility.

Genevieve Feiner: These classes are a stunning combination of losing yourself to the rhythm of the steps and the beat of the music whilst finding yourself embraced by a community of women united in their desire to make a difference in this world- and to have a blast while doing it! Janet’s energy is dangerously contagious and her playlists are killer. As soon as one class ends, I’m already looking forward to the next! Can’t get enough!

Michele DeCant: I started dancing with this group about 4 years ago and it is AMAZING to see how far this has come.  I was helped personally by dancing which broke up scar tissue and loosened up some joints in my body. Thank you World Dance!

Cindy Lyon: I love everything about World Dance. It is so much more than a dance/exercise class! It’s like Robin said, ‘I don’t think about anything while I’m in WD class, I’m just dancing.’ We all know what she means. WD is the best medicine around. I am so grateful to God to have found WD for me and so grateful for the friends, fun and healthy outlook it brings to my life! We need much more than physical health and the WD experience is the total health package: giving and receiving while renewing mind, body and spirit!

Karen Stiny: Dancing with World Dance and being of service (on the Board) are two of the greatest accomplishments that I am presently doing in my life.  I’m so grateful World Dance for Humanity is in existence.  We are such a wonderful fellowship and I am always amazed at how far just a little will go in helping others.

Isabel Perez: Thank you! I loved it – can’t wait for the next class! You have no idea how much I needed exercise and to meet friends!!! A million thanks!

2015 and prior

Lauren Martin: This class is truly so much fun and dancing makes working out that much better so thank you!  August 2015

Christine Holland: Hello Janet, Thanks for your nice follow-up and welcome. I really enjoyed the class. The women attending seem delightful, and you are a great inspiration to a beginner as well as the more experienced participant. August 2015

Leslie Armstrong: Dear Janet, Thank you again for all the information you continue to share with me about your wonderful organization. I am impressed that 100% of the donations to your nonprofit go to local and international projects. Successful assistance exists when it matches the needs of those you are reaching. World Dance for Humanity has done just that. I grew up in Africa and I understand how challenging it is to get foreign monies actually to those in need. Because of the invaluable relationships you have established in Rwanda, you are able to get all these funds directly to the people whose lives will be immeasurably improved with your support. I’m am excited to dance with you knowing that each step we take helps others. Continued success. August 2015

August Vanderbeek: Hi Janet, Thank you for your emails. I always get such a positive hit from them. I think what you are doing is fantastic. More energy to you! I always send you my best wishes with your work and dancing. August 2015

Loriann Mastromarino: I had a great time and can’t wait to return. Your class fed my body, mind, and soul in a way that I have been searching for. Thanks! July 2015

Maribel Gallarza: This class is so important to my well-being, emotionally, physically and mentally. The different routines exercise my brain as well as my body. It was a godsend after my knee replacement surgery and made it possible to regain mobility. June 2015

Genevieve Feiner: These classes are a stunning combination of losing yourself to the rhythm of the steps and the beat of the music whilst finding yourself embraced by a community of women united in their desire to make a difference in this world- and to have a blast while doing it! Janet’s energy is dangerously contagious and her playlists are killer. As soon as one class ends, I’m already looking forward to the next! Can’t get enough!  March 2015

Michele DeCant: I started dancing with this group about 4 years ago and it is AMAZING to see how far this has come.  I was helped personally by dancing which broke up scar tissue and loosened up some joints in my body. Thank you World Dance! January 2015

Cindy Lyon: I love everything about World Dance. It is so much more than a dance/exercise class! It’s like Robin said Thursday night, ‘I don’t think about anything while I’m in WD class, I’m just dancing.’ We all know what she means. WD is the best medicine around. I am so grateful to God to have found WD for me and so grateful for the friends, fun and healthy outlook it brings to my life! We need much more than physical health and the WD experience is the total health package: giving and receiving while renewing mind, body and spirit!  January 2015

Dale Zurawski: When I got from class home last night I told my husband this was our best dance class yet. I felt the whole group was in the same place. Beautiful, relaxing, exercise – all in one. The Pakistani dance was beautiful – a very good way to honor the victims of this week’s tragedy. December 2014

Cindy Lyon: I know how things can be when the heart is wounded and vulnerable. That’s the reason I sought out World Dance. My heart was searching…and there you were!  August 2014

Patty Hume: World Dance… shared sacred space with dance, intention and wild abandon!  August 2014

Juanita Johnson: I recently had a rather incredible conversation with someone new to World Dance.This woman was very touched by her experience of dancing in such an accepting environment of women. Several people did what we always do: welcomed her, reassured her, helped her with the steps. After class I went over to her and began telling her that we are so much more. I told her how we connect with each other in support and friendship…how we end most of our classes in a circle, holding hands, holding space for each other. I told her how we’re encouraged to “leave our egos at the door” and find that sweet spot in the movement and music that takes us to “a zone.” As I was telling her this, it occurred  to me that this is my 4th year with World Dance and how much of a privilege it’s been to be a part of the vision of combining dance with service to humanity. August 2014

Louise Janis: I am appreciating how wonderful our class is…so thank you! WD4H is a living, breathing phenomenal movement!  June 2014

Juanita Johnson: You’ve brought so much to our lives, Janet, but I swear, after every class I’m tempted to just run over and give you a big, sweaty hug for teaching me how to dance. Incredible joy for a dream finally realized!  June 2014

Renee Tillotson: I love everything that you do!!!  Thank you for dancing through life in your open-hearted way. Much aloha, Renée  May 2014

Juanita Johnson: I swear I just can’t stop smiling in class. The dancing, the whole World Dance experience, takes me to another level. I miss the steps sometimes because I get so caught up in the music and movement! Thank you for this!  March 2014

Nancy McGrath: Thank you for the lovely class yesterday. What a great way to start my morning!  I love the variety of music and rhythms that you teach. I also love that you have created a community of caring women who want to be connected to the world beyond Santa Barbara and make a difference in the lives of villagers in Rwanda. Your work, your values, and your beautiful spirit are an inspiration to me.  Thank you for offering your time and energy, and especially your heart and soul, to all who love to dance!  January 2014

Allegra Fuller Snyder: A teacher has visions of what her students may accomplish. Janet has far exceeded any of these visions through World Dance, which changing people’s lives in the most amazing and positive ways,  through the love of dance—both in Santa Barbara and Rwanda. May this vision and action, spread, and help change the world. September 2013

Louise: I am still in awe of the light World Dance for Humanity shines on the personal and global level!  I am the one full of gratitude to you and all of the individuals that sustain this brilliant force!  September 20133

Marisia Gonzales: I’ve been so busy with school and work I haven’t been able to come to class lately, but I adore the emails I receive informing me about the latest project and how the efforts of our lovely world dance community has given new life and hope to those around the world. I look forward to the updates, each one filling my heart with overwhelming gratitude and sometimes my eyes with tears of joy. I yearn to continue to be a part of this growing family of love through dance and service. Like many, I believed that to make any significant contribution meant donating large amounts of money or participating regularly. Then I had a shining little thought: Why not save up a portion of each of my paychecks to donate? After all, I may not have a six-figure income but I do live in one of the most gorgeous cities in America, have multiple jobs, live in a charming house, am surrounded by loving friends and family and have all the food I could want. I’m rich! In this experience I truly realized that every bit counts and that if we stop and look around us, counting each of our blessings, we’re reminded of just how abundant we are.  September 2013

Shanti Rose: I’ve been coming to the Saturday World Dance and Thriller sessions for the past couple months. I love what you are doing with World Dance, and with Thriller — both the fun and good exercise and the emphasis on using the monies for a higher purpose. Thanks again for all you do!  September 2013

Lyndy: Oh my gosh, I just watched the Rwanda video and on this very warm day, I got chills. It really made me realize just how much of a difference World Dance has made. It so clearly showed the joy from everyone. Even the goats and the cow looked happy. And I am happy for the goodness this has added to the world.  September 2013

Cindy Lyon: It is a long wait but a testimony to how much love and joy and “therapy” I find in the “class” which is due to the fact that YOU have created that sense of friendship/connection/outward thinking purposefulness (while being inwardly blessed)…..So thank YOU for always being there so that I can be there too.  August 2013

JoAnne: You are a whole community of great women in the joy of dance and gift of philanthropy. I thoroughly enjoyed myself this morning. Thank for the warm welcome.  August 2013

Celina Hunt: I’m so happy to be a part of a group of people that takes so much action – Inspires me in so many ways! July 2013

Becky Spadoro:That is amazing that we raised that much! Thanks for doing this for the Neighborhood Clinics. Really cute pictures too!  I think everyone is getting thinner too or shall I just say more in shape. I’m noticing arms look toned, and just a leaner look on many of us World Dancers.  June 2013

Karen Feeney: I enjoyed the class very much.  I couldn’t believe how energized my body felt after class.  And I am happy to report that I didn’t feel it as much today as I thought I might.  Thank you. I will be back!  April 2013

Amy: Hi Janet, Just wanted to send you a quick THANK YOU for the Sat and Sun classes!!  I look forward to them all week, and am disappointed when we have family weekend trips scheduled and I can’t make them–might try a weekend eve class, on those weeks. Anyway, just sending out an appreciation to you, and all that you do! I’m starting to get a glimpse of what it will be like to get my hips unfrozen and do the salsa;-). And I’m spreading the word to all my friends–who would  guess that helping the world could feel so good?! Thanks again!  April 2013

Stephanie Bashir: When I come to World Dance, I know we are helping change the world.  At the same time, I feel the class transports me to a fantasy land.  Putting on the  jangly hip scarf is akin to Superman putting on his cape.  I am magically uplifted and joyfully do steps and move in ways  that seem impossible in the rest of my ordinary life. Thank you, Janet!  April 2013

Ruth Ann Bowe: OMG! Took my first World Dance class on Saturday morning and it was, by far, the best $10 I have spent in months! So much fun AND a great workout, yet my soreness was limited because of all of the stretching that was included. Thank you so much!  March 2013

Juanita: It’s so heartening to see via email all of the dancers who’ve offered to help teach while you’re healing. I’m not surprised. You’ve really set in motion a wonderful, supportive community. I tell folks about us so often because the combination of dance and service has bound us in such a unique and strong way.  March 2013

Karen Michaels: Dear Janet, I just want to say that I think  what you are doing with World Dance is so great. You have created a community of dancers engaged in service and open hearted giving. All the while, having a good time dancing with you. How great is that!  January 26, 2013

Cindy Lyon – WD is like a wonderful big bowl of chicken soup on a winter night, it warms our souls from the inside out and makes us healthier and happier whenever we partake of it.

Alex Palley – When I read horrific reports of atrocities against women all over the world, I am grateful that our World Dance class and it’s values and accomplishments offer a beautiful ray of HOPE sorely needed.

Sherry Robin – World Dance has become an important part of my life, something I have been looking for to become more connected with women in my community and to find meaningful ways to help people in other parts of the world. January 1, 2013

Jatila van der Veen – Thank you, Janet, for everything you do for dance, community spirit, and service to humanity. I’m so grateful to have met you, and joined in the efforts of World Dance. In a world where there is so much needless violence and selfishness, it is a blessing to be able to help such beautiful people as the Never Again Fellowship of Rwanda. January 1, 2013

JuanitaJohnson – Thank you so much, Janet. This has been a wonderful journey for all of us to see World Dance unfold and become what it is now. I could never have imagined it when I first began dancing with you 2 and a half years ago. Loving blessings for the new year. January 1, 2013

Sandra Stinson – World Dance is good for the soul in so many different ways. As someone who has exercised her whole life, World Dance offers a different work-out; something non-linear and free. This is the most fun I have ever had while exercising. I smile the whole class. The women are so supportive and encouraging. They welcomed me with open arms, and made me feel more than just welcome; they made me feel important to the group If this is what World Dance was about, it would be enough. But it goes so far beyond a great workout.
World Dance is about charity, both here and abroad. After paying studio rent, 100% of the proceeds go to people in need. The communities that World Dance serves are overlooked by the large charities. We have the opportunity to make a real difference in people’s lives, and we do. I am so happy I found World Dance. December 2012

JuanitaJohnson – There’s a word in Sanskrit: SEVA, which means selfless service. This is what we’re all about now. Our heartfelt experience last week, dancing for and with the people in retirement communities and the sub acute unit, and now these incredible responses from our Rwandan community confirms the focus and intention of World Dance. Leaves me humbled and grateful. Thank you, Janet, for being the inspiration behind it all. December 2012

Marie Chu – Janet, although I have been in the United States for over 30 years, yet I have never taken any dance class before. You are my first one and one of the best teachers I can ever have. Not only doing exercise, but also  sharing fun, love and holiday spirit with those who needed.  Especially I want to say thank you for your videos of the dances which really helps me a lot to practice at my home. Each time when I am able to catch and do all the steps  with you in one song, I felt I have “accomplished” a piece of  work.  I call it  a  self- challenge.  It gives me some “small” confident on myself. It is a privilege to be able to participate with you all. December 2012

Laurie Leighty – The World Dance class gives us all a wonderful and fun workout, makes us feel part of a sisterhood, offers us a chance to be part of great projects, and makes me come back wanting more! For me the workout and opportunity to let go of the stuff that stresses me out is the biggest gift. I love and appreciate this class more than words can express! December 2012

Amanda Emsland – Thank you, thank you, thank you! The time, energy, commitment and dedication of the World Dancers to dance and selfless service is so inspiring. This has opened me up in ways that are not describable in words. Creativity, joy, love, expression, dance are all coming into my life in new ways because of the doors that have been opened in my body and mind through this experience. I believe in Michael Jackson’s message of love and giving to others, it is clear World Dance does too! November 2012

Leah Combs – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: taking World Dance has wholly and completely changed my life, and I couldn’t be happier. I am thankful every day that I found your class and that we are working together to change the world. November 2012

Maureen Sullivan – I am having SO much fun doing the Thriller and Beat It dances! I just want to say that World Dance such a wonderful gift to Santa Barbara. Truly, it is a bright light of Joy and it’s so fun to have discovered this orbit.

Sharon Sheehan- I’m still revisiting in my mind the short but wonderful visit with you in Santa Barbara. And of course I am singing the praises of World Dance Workout! I truly would come if I lived close.  I love the way that so many elements come together – freedom of spirit, physical exercise, the beauty of dance, being onstage and singing back-up with Tina!, and most of all, the lovely, kind and friendly women from all walks of life.  I’m so proud of you and the love and hope and beauty that God is bringing into lives through you!!!

Sue Whalen – I just want to say, again and again, how much I enjoy the class, you, the women, the dancing, the causes… People are so surprised when they learn I drive to SB from LO on the weekends (and when my work schedule permits, from SM on Tues and Thurs), but for me it’s not even an issue, since I know the trade off is 90 minutes of complete immersion into the music & dance that makes it all worth worth the drive. While I may have a conflict this summer attending some of Sat a.m.’s classes, I plan to register for the summer Fri a.m. classes – and to attend by taking a 1/2 day of vacation from work each Fri. Some people think I’m crazy, but the 90 minutes of music and dance is a vacation!

Cindy Lyon – Incredible and so humbling to be abe to help. Amazing that these little goats are giving girls the opportunity to be educated…wow! Thanks for forming us ever-so-gently into a dance-loving , purpose-supporting group of ladies who have rather surprisingly, yet so smoothly, come together to enjoy all of it, but most of all, the moving and being with, each other.

Grace Spadoro – This is awesome – I am so happy my goat is giving such a great opportunity to kids half way around the world!

Tanvi Ajwawat – It was such a wonderful class. I’m so happy that I found this class that helps aid projects in these countries. I came from a small town in India. I know what is like not to have light to study in, water to drink, and many other things. I am so glad, I can be part of this class and get involved to help aid these project. I’m Community Outreach Chair for my site at work so I always do loads of projects in SB, prior to that I have worked with Pace for girls, many other programs. I love to help people and make them happy. This will be great, I can get involved in community outside of US as well.

Laurie Richardson – Janet, these classes have empowered me from the get-go! I recall that first evening, so shy, scared and very uncertain about most everything in my Life: being greeted by Laura, Leah and others, in the most warm, caring, friendly way. It is that plus much more that has drawn me back, again and again. I love this class, this group. It is the Light, the Power, the Inspiration, the Caring for one another and other women far beyond our community, that touches me, encourages me, helps heal me. It is NOT about me, it is about all of us.  And as you so wonderfully say, being in this Life to ease another’s pain/burden/suffering, even a bit!  The way in which we end class is the most Precious and Sacred time to me. Thank you for offering us the amazing Path on this Life Journey, that we can walk together in support and love. I believe it was a God-Thing, that I discovered that World dance poster on the IV Co-op bulletin board, that dark, dreary, sad and lost-feeling day, some 4 months ago now. Truly, those are no longer adjectives I would use to describe my Life in any way now!!! My Gratitude runs deep, for you and each Incredible, Lovely, Awesome Woman that shares this Dancing Way. Gracias, Merci, Tak, Danke and so much more!

Jeannie Russell – This is the first time that I have put this money towards a cause that resonated with me so much. World Dance is a vehicle for me towards a bigger world. Thank you for expanding me – and for helping the world.

Laura Davis – My new religion is JOY… and this morning’s World Dance class was my church.

Cindy Lyon – These words and pictures make the world shrink sooooooooo quickly.  World Dance has become a bridge between women…we are just learning about each other’s existence.  Incredible.

Jennifer Schwarz – World Dance enriches all our lives – one dance step at a time.  I’m so thankful for community of women who share this joy.

Annie Wright – I just wanted to tell you how much I felt alive last night at dance class. It’s been months since I’ve felt that energy in my body. Sure I need to lose weight, but that’ll come. I felt the way I felt when I was attending dance class 5 times a week!  I thank you for that from the bottom of my heart.

Elizabeth Schwyzer – Dear Janet and World Dance students, Wow. I just swung by the Independent today and totally to my surprise found a beautiful gift basket waiting for me. How above and beyond! And how thoughtful of you. I was having a stressful work day, and you certainly cheered me up. I’m so glad if my articles help articulate what World Dance is all about, or help expand your good work. Keep dancing!

Cindy Lyon – WD provides a respite, a time when all of the noise in our heads slowly diminishes and we are able to focus on what is pure and right and lovely and worthy in this world.  We are so fortunate to be able to have this much fun, all the while strengthening our bodies, our minds, and truly helping others.  We love the class, because it’s not just a class, it’s a community. I have often been moved to tears from the sense of sheer joy at dancing with such an incredible group of women. That deep sense of connection, with women whose names I may not even know can’t be put into words. Then there’s the connection to the people we’ve helped in countries far away, but still hold close in that human heart-to-heart connection as we dance and share the joy and love that underlies our time together. Thank you, Janet and all of the Women of World Dance who make this all happen. I’m honored and grateful to be a part of this.

Annie Wright – I said my goal was to learn THRILLER…and I have! But I’ve also made friends, and I LOVE to do all the dances we learn in class, and it’s such good fun!!! AND it’s such a great, sweaty workout. I get so high from it, takes me awhile to come down off the cloud I’m now on. Thanks ever Janet for having this idea and sharing it with all of us in Santa Barbara!

CelinaHunt – Great class! Trying to fit in your weekend class (once a week is just not enough!!!)

CindyLyon – I am so proud to be part of such a wonderful, supportive community that happens to be known as the ladies of World Dance Workout! I am SO glad that I took a chance (was very nervous) and signed up! It has been wonderful, positive and so much FUN from day #1. I love being part of creating this growing community, giving us all the chance to help other women and of course, the chance to dance and move together…every class is a joyous place to be!

CindyLyon – I just can’t believe how much this class and group of ladies means to me already after just a few weeks. This class is so encouraging – non-dancers like me don’t even care about anything but having fun!  Mistakes???? Oh well! Thanks for reminding me (after 18 years of watching competitive Irish dance) that dancing, first and foremost, should be about the JOY of the movement experience and the camaraderie of dancers!

JennaTico – Your class really does pack an emotional punch, and serves as a constant reminder of the engagement between the body and mind… it’s always powerful to realize the connection between creating space in the body and creating space in the soul, spirit, heart. The fact that your class supports such a wonderful cause only makes the power of dance to bridge communities that much more obvious.  I can’t WAIT to start participating regularly again.

JoJoBarker – Love the class, love the women, love the music, love the spirit.

LesleeGoodman – To people thinking about joining the class, I would say: come! It’s fun, it’s lively, it changes all the time, we don’t focus on any one dance long enough to attain perfection so you don’t have to feel bad if you can’t do it perfectly; it’s a good workout, and you won’t even realize you’re working out because it’s so joyful. AND we’re supporting Women for Women International, so SOMEONE, somewhere will benefit from your participation.

MichellePaddack – I have been to many dance classes in my life and never have I felt such an immediately welcoming and strong community. I started a career as a dancer, but stopped it, largely because I felt it was too self-serving. I asked myself, how could I possibly serve the world by dancing? You just blew that question out of the water! I am looking forward to seeing you again soon.

LauraPeterson – Joining Janet’s class has opened me up to the wonderful world dancing. The energy and fun is what keeps bringing me back. The time goes so fast, you don’t even realize you are getting a work out! Plus, we’re doing a great thing for the Women for Women organization and I am so happy to be a part of it.

Stacey Wiebe - I was trying to think of what was my favorite part of class last night, maybe the beginning, middle and end?! Loved the dancing stretches for the warm up, thoroughly enjoyed the trip around the world, learning a little about each of the dances, LOVED the cool down, and really appreciated the meditation and the reminder of how blessed we are – what a luxury it is to dance. I love your energy and enthusiasm and what you are doing, it fills the heart.

Juanita Johnson – When I’m at the World Dance class, I can’t stop smiling! I feel it’s been a transformative experience to let go of the analytical and let the pure joy of the music and movement take over! I too have felt an incredible sense of joy and community.

Molly Barker – Many Thanks Janet for bringing us all together! I am simultaneously proud and humbled by what our world dance community is doing!

Allegra Fuller Snyder – A teacher has visions of what her students may accomplish. Janet has far exceeded any of these visions through World Dance, which changing people’s lives in the most amazing and positive ways,  through the love of dance—both in Santa Barbara and Rwanda. May this vision and action, spread, and help change the world. Sept. 2013

Louise: I am still in awe of the light World Dance for Humanity shines on the personal and global level!  I am the one full of gratitude to you and all of the individuals that sustain this brilliant force! Sept. 2013

Marisia Gonzales: I’ve been so busy with school and work I haven’t been able to come to class lately, but I adore the emails I receive informing me about the latest project and how the efforts of our lovely world dance community has given new life and hope to those around the world. I look forward to the updates, each one filling my heart with overwhelming gratitude and sometimes my eyes with tears of joy. I yearn to continue to be a part of this growing family of love through dance and service. Like many, I believed that to make any significant contribution meant donating large amounts of money or participating regularly. Then I had a shining little thought: Why not save up a portion of each of my paychecks to donate? After all, I may not have a six-figure income but I do live in one of the most gorgeous cities in America, have multiple jobs, live in a charming house, am surrounded by loving friends and family and have all the food I could want. I’m rich! In this experience I truly realized that every bit counts and that if we stop and look around us, counting each of our blessings, we’re reminded of just how abundant we are. Sept. 2013

Shanti Rose: I’ve been coming to the Saturday World Dance and Thriller sessions for the past couple months. I love what you are doing with World Dance, and with Thriller — both the fun and good exercise and the emphasis on using the monies for a higher purpose. Thanks again for all you do! Sept. 2013

Lyndy: Oh my gosh, I just watched the Rwanda video and on this very warm day, I got chills. It really made me realize just how much of a difference World Dance has made. It so clearly showed the joy from everyone. Even the goats and the cow looked happy. And I am happy for the goodness this has added to the world. Sept. 2013

Cindy Lyon: It is a long wait but a testimony to how much love and joy and “therapy” I find in the “class” which is due to the fact that YOU have created that sense of friendship/connection/outward thinking purposefulness (while being inwardly blessed)…..So thank YOU for always being there so that I can be there too. August 2013

JoAnne: You are a whole community of great women in the joy of dance and gift of philanthropy. I thoroughly enjoyed myself this morning. Thank for the warm welcome. August 2013

Celina Hunt: I’m so happy to be a part of a group of people that takes so much action – Inspires me in so many ways! July 2013

Becky Spadoro: That is amazing that we raised that much! Thanks for doing this for the Neighborhood Clinics. Really cute pictures too!  I think everyone is getting thinner too or shall I just say more in shape. I’m noticing arms look toned, and just a leaner look on many of us World Dancers. June 2013