Back in the month of May, officers from the Saanich Police Department in Victoria, Canada, found some time in their schedules to participate in a community engagement activity, which required them to put on their dancing shoes.
A flash mob was planned at Uptown with the help of twenty-one cops from the department and one hundred kids from the dance program of a local community school called Spectrum Community School.
The music that they decided to go with is “Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars, of course.
Following the event, the Saanich Officers Department released a news statement in which they said that the purpose of the gathering was “to develop a particular bond between kids and police.”
“This was accomplished by the officers taking part in the dance sessions alongside the students, where they were able to joke with one another and work toward the shared objective of dancing together in a flash mob. “They were willing to go outside the box and create a special and lasting experience for our community. Dancing in public as part of a flash mob was clearly outside of the comfort zone of most officers, but they were willing to create a great and lasting memory for our city.”
Officers not only participated in dance lessons with the kids, but they also worked on their dancing in their own time.
And where did they learn such moves? Lia Shannon, a dance instructor at Spectrum Community School, eventually got the Chief Constable’s Citizenship Award for her involvement in arranging the event. This award was given to her because of her contribution to the organization of the event.
Congratulations are in order for Lia Shannon, who was awarded the Chief Constable’s Citizenship Award. Congratulations! pic.twitter.com/sGytGWQ0Br
The post Spectrum School (@SpectrumThunder) made on June 21, 2017, can be found here.
“I had no notion the award was ever given out; it came as a complete and utter shock to me.” According to what Shannon shared with Victoria News, “I was very thrilled and honored to get it.”
Roll Focus Productions was the company that did a professional recording of the dance, and the YouTube page for the official version has more than 100,000 views (though there are other recordings from those present at the event as well).
It is not an easy effort to organize a public show that involves 121 individuals, but the group was able to effectively surprise customers on May 4 with their 4-minute performance.
“My advanced dancers begin it, and then I have the rest of my dancers join in, so I have around one hundred dancers, and then the cops are behaving as if they don’t know what’s going on. After that, they come in, and that’s when the audience gets the surprise of their lives,” Shanon said.
However, she does not take credit for the concept, which was developed by Niki Sundher, a member of the community engagement branch of the Saanich Police Department.
It’s hard to believe that Shannon and the dancers only had four days to pull everything together, but they did it!
She divulged that throughout those four days, her dancers had trained each day, for the whole of each day.
The 21 police officers took their jobs seriously and attended training whenever they were able to; in fact, Shannon scheduled some of the teaching sessions at 2 in the morning to better meet the officers’ schedules.
“At one point in time, there were 17 police officers enrolled in my class. To put it simply, I was blown away by how seriously they took it.”
One officer, in particular, was adamant that everything is done correctly.
“He came in here and worked on some things with me. I tried to warn him that this section was very challenging. However, he took everything very seriously and said, “I’m going to accomplish this.”
Not only did the performance succeed in reaching its objective of fostering ties between students and law enforcement, but it also drew a crowd and received a lot of positive feedback.
“I thought it would just be a fun project and I can’t believe the effect it had on the community,” said Shannon, who has also seen advantages for her pupils as a result of the initiative. “I can’t believe the impact it had on the community.” “The relationships that the children developed with the law enforcement. They are relieved to see these cops at this time. It really ties everything together well.”
If you want to view the performance for yourself, make sure to scroll down below!
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