Drill Team Works to Build Camden Community [AUDIO]
Tawanda Jones was just 15-years-old when she founded the Camden Sophisticated Sisters Drill Team.
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The program is designed to offer children the opportunity to perform all styles of dance in a team and family-type environment, while keeping children away from the pitfalls of Camden’s rough streets.
Certain criteria must be met, though.
“In order for these kids to be a part of the organization, they have to maintain a C-average. They have to do 200 hours of community service,” Jones explained.
These requirements have not deterred membership. More than 4,000 children have gone through the program.
Jones believes it provides the youth a chance to see things besides their normal element.
“All their problems for that moment is gone. They’re basically dancing their pain away,” she explained.
The team is open to children of all ages from Camden and surrounding areas.
She said that seeing some of the adult situations many of these young kids are put through in their home lives keeps her inspired to do more.
“These kids are definitely my motivation. They’re my passion. They are definitely my heart.”
Jones’ programs boasts a 100 percent high school graduation rate.
“I would love every last one of these kids to reach their goal, their highest potential, to go to college,” she said.