The Q-Kidz Dance Team was formed 28 years ago in the West End of Cincinnati by Marquicia Jones-Woods in an effort to give the kids in the area’s housing projects something safe and productive to do after school. Over the years, Q-Kidz has become far more than a dance team, though. Marquicia—or Ms. Quicy (KWEE-see), as she’s known to all the girls—and her 22-year-old twin daughters, Mariah and Chariah, teach the team members how to dance, but more than that, they instill values about the importance of a good education, healthy living, and combating violence in their community. As Markyla Burnam, the team captain, says, “Ms. Quicy has taught me everything that I need to know about dance and about being myself—respecting myself as a young woman.”
Ms. Quicy and her daughters are inspirations to me, and I thank them for letting me witness and document the work they’re doing with these amazing girls.
Lindsey Rome has been taking pictures since she was 14. She lives in Nashville, Tennessee.