Florida Ballet dancers raise awareness for shelter pets

Florida Ballet dancers raise awareness for shelter pets
Members of the Florida Ballet Conservatory at Animal Care and Protective Services (Photo by Samantha Barcia, a Florida Ballet student)
Clio Chazan-Gabbard and Amina Kolenc pose with Capella, available for adoption at Animal Care and Protective Services.

Clio Chazan-Gabbard and Amina Kolenc pose with Capella, available for adoption at Animal Care and Protective Services.

Taking advantage of a social media trend, dancers of the Florida Ballet Conservatory took time from their rigorous schedule to visit the City of Jacksonville’s Animal Care and Protective Service facility on Forest Avenue to pose with shelter dogs and kittens.

Many dancers post photos of themselves in pose with their own pets, but Riverside resident Amina Kolenc, a senior at the Florida Ballet Conservatory and co-president of the National Honor Society for Dance Arts with San Marco resident Clio Chazan-Gabbard, decided to add a charity twist to the trend.

Kolenc coordinated with nine other dancers, a photographer who is also a dancer, and the shelter for late afternoon photo session on Nov. 16. “Dancers being photographed with their pets has become a trend on social media, mostly Facebook and Instagram,” said Kolenc’s mother, Alisa. “It was a chance to see a personal and fun side to the dancers, who usually are photographed in such a serious and professional-style fashion.”   

The Florida Ballet will be able to use the photos to recognize the work of their Honor Society. The dancers will be able to use the photos in their own social medias. And, most importantly, the ACPS will be able to use the photos to promote adoptions from their shelter and to bring awareness to the work they do there, said Alisa Kolenc.

Prior to a mega-adoption event Nov. 29-Dec. 1, there were 592 animals at ACPS, 305 dogs and 287 cats and kittens.

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