Our mission is to bring awareness and eliminate the stigma of mental health by providing more access to mental health services and developing preventive measures to reduce risk of suicide in our communities including at-risk and less-privileged children, teens and adults through the proven therapeutic properties of dance, mental health workshops, media resources, partnerships, podcasts, blogs, government, programs & events as tools to help deal with mental health challenges such as bullying, stress, anxiety, isolation, inclusiveness, loneliness, perfectionism, depression & dementia while learning to love self and celebrate life!
Dance for Life was initiated in July 2018 when director Kristin Barlow heard of another suicide in her community and was alarmed by the growing rate of suicides in Utah. Determined to do something about it, she took her experience of 27 years in the dance industry in both California and Utah to launch the first Dance for Life Suicide Prevention & Awareness Event during National Suicide Prevention Month September 2018 with overwhelming support from the dance community including amazing dance talent Sophia Lucia of Dance Moms fame. With the media's help and support, the movement is growing with additional dance programs incorporated during 2019 to help with mental health through the therapeutic benefits of dance and anti-bullying self-esteem programs. We continue to grow programs in hopes to prevent any child, teen or adult to reach the point of no return and to have joy in their day-to-day lives. Dance for Life received its 501(c)3 non-profit status in August 2019 and moved its national headquarters in 2022 to central Florida to expand programs nationwide.
Kristin Barlow started Ballet, Etc. Dance Studio in Oakley, California in 1990 after intensive study of ballet, jazz and tap at the University of Utah and Janet Gray Dance Studio in Salt Lake City, Utah. She sold the studio relocating to Brigham City, Utah in 1996 where she founded Starlite Express Dance Academy and Turning Pointe Ballet Company. In 2011 she purchased property in Perry to be the new home of Starstruck Dance & Performing Arts and renovated the Brigham City studio to be the new home of Dream Pointe Ballet Company. In 2018, she founded Dance for Life Suicide Prevention & Good Mental Health non-profit to bring awareness & provide good mental health programs to Utah & beyond. Kristin believes dance can be used for a greater good by uniting the dance world & giving all the opportunity to receive the therapeutic benefits of dance to help strengthen society - individuals and families.