our why

empowering others with movement for movement

empowerment

The use of movement to bring light to social, economic, and cultural issues.

trust

Encouraging others to step outside of their normal, everyday self, and allowing themselves to do something different in order to step outside of the bounds of complacency.

trust

Encouraging others to step outside of their normal, everyday self, and allowing themselves to do something different to step outside of the bounds of complacency.

unity

Movement is a universal language that brings people of all walks of life together despite societal, cultural, and economic differences.

common

ground

Once we are willing to be outside of our common box of comfort and habit, light will be shed on not the experiences that make us different, but our likeness that makes us similar. 

expressions

What we are willing to express allows us to join together in order to appreciate our similarities that allow us to overcome life's issues through movement. 

our why starts with them

According to Simon Sinek, the most successful people don't focus on the who's or the what's. Instead, they start with why. In 2017, M4M Founder and Lead Facilitator, Quentin, had the opportunity to travel with American Refugee Committee (ARC) to Nakivale Settlement in Uganda. Here, he taught expression and movement workshops. Upon return to the United States, Quentin not only brought back this moving experience with him, but also a plan to inspire positive waves of change via the powerful language of movement.

This is where M4M's why was born. 

 

the importance of movement

In the field of trauma psychology, trauma is accepted as a phenomenon that affects the physiological, neurological, and psychological organization of the human organism and can lead to dissociation. Because dissociation is, by definition, the dis-association of components of bodily and psychic experience, comprehensive treatment such as dance/movement therapy is unique in its ability to support physiological and psychological integration and cohesion.

Dance can be performed to serve various functions (social, competitive, ceremonial, martial arts). But it also has two distinct forms – theatrical dance in which dancers perform for an audience, and participatory social dance where dancing in a group is encouraged to anyone. 

 

empowerment

When traumatic life-altering experiences happen it can shake loose confidence in reality which can lead to dissociation between body and mind. Through deepening our connection to ourselves and authentic expression we can further deepen our connection to what we have to share with the world and better withstand the potential hardships that life may bring. Gaining a deeper understanding of oneself is a coming home to life. Like walking into a room that you have been in before, looked around, even lived in. You’ll probably feel more comfortable and confident walking into that room than one you have never been in before. Movement can give us a new perspective on how we navigate through our lives, it can open the doors to explore. With knowledge we are empowered. As empowered individuals, we can have a greater impact on our communities and create bigger ripples for change. As our mission, “empowering others with movement for movement” it is our passion to help empower the people of this world to shift towards a more conscious, self-aware, and expressive global community.

women's retreat

In 2019 m4m had the honor of leading a workshop for the women’s cancer retreat at Camp-Make-A-Dream in Gold Creek, MT. Through movement exercises focused on acknowledging individual strengths, the women were empowered to reclaim the connection to their bodies in a new way and find the confidence to express themselves. It was so powerful to witness how vulnerable and courageous these women were when stepping up and expressing their stories to the m4m team.

 

trust

Trust is such an in-depth, multidimensional topic. One that can take a lifetime to unpack. Throughout life we may experience trauma on varying levels that break our trust, with others, with systems, within communities and with ourselves. Whether it be more individual, say a moment a parent does show up for you like you expected or more collective like a natural disaster, trauma is trauma and the layers can build up and create a disparity within the way you’d like to show up and how you’ve learned to navigate your life. 

 

In the field of trauma psychology, trauma is accepted as a phenomenon that affects the physiological, neurological, and psychological organization of the human organism and can lead to dissociation. Because dissociation is, by definition, the dis-association of components of bodily and psychic experience, comprehensive treatment such as dance/movement therapy is unique in its ability to support physiological and psychological integration and cohesion.

high SCHOOL workshops 

M4M conducted movement and expression workshops with high schools in the missoula, mT area. These workshops focused on breathing, interpretation, and mobility. a newfound sense of Trust was established between peers, as well as peers and their superiors at the schools. This sense of trust was established through the bonding influence of movement. After these workshops were conducted, both teacher and student were able to better understand and trust one another due to movement.

 

unity

M4M explores how emotions and trauma, as an individual experience, can feel and be isolating. Often, because we have to do our own inner work (no one else can do it for us), it can lead to a deeper sense of loneliness in the task of human growth towards a more fulfilled life. Without support or a way to express our true feelings we can get lost in the heaviness of the task. By acknowledging that others may be going through a similar experience and through sharing, compassion and empathy we can connect to one another and support each other’s experiences, not taking away from our own experience, yet helping to elevate each other and heal. Our hope for our work is to demonstrate how powerful a tool movement can be to express, encourage compassion, and even empathy to connect one another in our experiences and support each other in healing. Movement is such a powerful language and one that can be used to find unity through compassion.

C.S. PORTER SCHOOL 

Over 3 days M4M had the honor of working with the 6th, 7th, and 8th grades on understanding the art of storytelling through movement. Using various methods of taking the literature out of the story, telling this through movement and exploring how to embody the story. Offering them a new way to self express, empowering them to step outside of their comfort zones to be confident in their voices, ideas and bodies. Having them all show up on the same level allowed space for compassion and a sense of togetherness. The idea being that with a shared sense of vulnerability and stepping up to courage comes a deeper understanding of one another, and with that connection a potential that students will feel less alone in their growth as humans. 

Developing skills to tell stories through movement, and recognizing that our actions are stories we are subtly (or not so subtly) telling the world and encouraging a consciousness around owning the stories we tell.

 

common ground

M4M explores how the expression of movement and dance can lead to the understanding of others not through the endless factors that differentiate us, but through the aspects that we share as humans. Dance and movement both have the incredible power to overcome cultural, social, and economic barriers rampant in impoverished communities. These barriers are often a result of the differences that we cannot look beyond due to the blindness caused by our natural instinct and bias towards others different than us. Once we are able to look beyond these differences, we can experience common ground in order to understand the stories of others, although these stories may be largely different than our own. M4M encourages people of all shapes, sizes, colors, and backgrounds to come together to celebrate what makes us alike as humans, but what also makes us unique as individuals. Once this happens, a common ground is established that allows dance and movement to have a power it was not able to before. 

phoenix workshop 

M4M conducted a movement workshop in Phoenix, AZ in 2019 that focused two individuals who were very different in nature. This workshop emphasized that when humans learn things, we have to take it in with an open point of view versus going off of the behaviors and foundations we already know. This was expressed through movement when we asked each person to go back-to-back and to act each expressive word or feeling given to them. Every word given to this two individuals was acted out differently expect for one single word: love. Once the individuals were given love to act out, they both instinctually hugged themselves.  This workshops emphasizes M4M's core value of common ground and how important it is to try and understand others for not what draws lines between us as individuals, but what draws circles around us as humans with endless similarities.

 

expressions

Expression happen as a result of common ground. Expression is an incredibly important pillar in M4M due to what can occur once expression is achieved. We celebrate our differences once we feel as if we have common ground. If common ground is not achieved, then expression will never be possible. M4M is built on the foundation of expression. Without expression, humans are not able to learn about each other's stories and are not able to help one another in telling that story. Movement and dance are two very important forms of expression due to the universal understanding that lays behind them. A common language or vessel of communication is not needed to understand one another when interacting via dance and movement.

soft landing missoula

 M4M partnered up with Soft Landing Missoula, a local nonprofit organization focused on the long-term integration of refugee and immigrant families into the Missoula community, in order to facilitate movement opportunities with youth part of this organization's moral obligation group. Katie, M4M Program Director, and Quentin, M4M Founder and Lead Facilitator, taught dance workshops to groups of the youth while Sarah, M4M Marketing Director, taught gymnastics. Although the members of the M4M team and the refugee and immigrant youth part of the Soft Landing Missoula community are from very different walks of life, they were all able to better understand one another's stories and background through the art of dance and movement in a safe space.

 
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