Dance legend Kafayat Shafau-Ameh popularly known as Kaffy through her Kreative Arts Foundation for Youths (KAFFY) Foundation is working together with stakeholders to bring health insurance to Nigerian dancers following the spate of health challenges leading to the loss of lives among them.
Kaffy and stakeholders in the industry including healthcare providers, health management organizations, life coaches, dance group leaders and dance artists converged to prefer a sustainable healthcare deal at a two-day virtual conference tagged Dance2Health.
The summit which was put together by KAFFY Foundation is the first of its kind and was birthed in response to the growing concerns of health challenges faced by members of the dance industry.
“More than 98% of dancers lack health insurance and self-awareness. The majority lead a lifestyle of drugs, peer pressure, poor mental wellbeing, and personal irresponsibility,” Kaffy said.
“This is the bane of the industry. Until every corporate dance leader is shouldered with the responsibility of ensuring that every staff (dancer) has a valid health insurance cover this industry lacks a heart.”
Other stakeholders at the summit also gave their takes on the best ways dancers can take care of their bodies.
Before the summit, Kaffy had done her survey of how many Nigerian dancers would be interested in health insurances and impressively, 250 responses were recorded within 42 hours.
Plans for the first phase of the initiative with an initial 500 dancers which would benefit from a compressible health care insurance plan at an affordable rate are being concluded.
“We agreed to start small in Lagos State by running with a proper organizational structure, proper registration of dancers within Local Government Areas, evaluating the cost of healthcare per unit, and finally putting up a system that stirs sustainable support and sponsorship is the way to go. This conference is an ongoing conversation that was proposed to run twice per month,” Kaffy said.
Aside from the healthcare insurance initiative, Kaffy through her foundation is also launching a mental health support group where dancers can meet twice a month.