Movement Workshops For Intimate Partner Violence Survivors
Week of July 11, 2020
Making space for

Move to Move Beyond

Movement Workshops

Movement gives me wings and a sense of freedom. Like a bird soaring above, filled with happiness and love. Fulfilling my destiny by just being me.

Workshop Participant

During this time of COVID-19, reports indicate gender-based violence, including domestic, teen dating and sexual violence, has increased globally and victims are currently at a higher risk.

Gibney has compiled a list of resources that we hope can support those who are experiencing violence, organizations that are working with survivors and young people, and anyone who might be looking for increased support or self care right now.

The centerpiece of Community Action is a robust program of movement workshops that addresses trauma, launched in 2000 in partnership with Sanctuary for Families. The program has since expanded to include Safe Horizon, Barrier Free Living, Sakhi, Community Health Action of Staten Island among many other New York City organizations. Community Action offers over 365 free workshops annually to individuals and families who are on journeys to healthier futures.

Intimate partner violence survivors have often lacked the power to make choices in their own lives because their impulses have been controlled by another person. A collaborative workshop environment, paired with our four-part program model, helps these survivors with issues of choice, self-expression, trust, and sharing.

Gibney Dance Company members receive specialized training in order to design and facilitate workshops that draw from their artistic practices and address the needs of survivors. The workshop format is consistent but flexible enough for the dancers to bring their own personalities, areas of expertise, and creativity to the work. Workshops are tailored to the unique needs of each shelter.

Offered during support groups under the supervision of a social worker, workshops underscore clinical themes, address group dynamics, and explore common issues. Ultimately, Community Action workshops give survivors the emotional tools to take back control of their own futures.

If you or someone you know needs help, please call the NYC Safe Horizon hotline at 1–800-621–HOPE (4673) or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−SAFE (7233). Both hotlines operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The movement workshops are a must for our clients’ spirit.

Shelter Staff

Movement Workshops
Four Part Model

Our workshops follow a unique four-part progression that reflects the Company’s artistic process:

1. Look Inside: Reflect. Movement and creativity foster reflection and self-awareness that lead to greater self-confidence.

2. Speak Through Movement: Express. Movement and creativity encourage choice and decision-making. These activities help participants listen to their inner voices, express their feelings, and assert their identities.

3. Work Together: Collaborate. Moving and creating in a group is an enriching experience with valuable social and artistic rewards. Working together validates the experiences of every member of the group and helps to banish feelings of isolation and fear.

4. Take Care™:  Dancers share state-of-the-art tools for stress reduction and self-care drawn from extensive training in dance, bodywork, and somatic practices.


96% of clients reported the workshop helped them relieve stress.

96% of clients reported that the workshop improved their physical health and well-being.

100% of clients reported that they would like to participate in another workshop.

The most common emotion reported before the workshop started was ‘sleepy’, followed by ‘nervous’. After the workshop the most common emotions were ‘confident’ and ‘creative’, followed by ‘strong’.


Join us by saying YES! Your support means so much to the artists exercising creative liberty in our space, the audiences enriched by their work, the survivors we empower, and the youth we inspire to build healthier futures.