Our Charity

AWA DANCE (Advancing Women’s Aspirations with Dance) is a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) based in the UK, founded by choreographer Avatâra Ayuso. AWA DANCE is dedicated to the leadership development of women and teenage girls, using the transformative power of dance as the tool to empower their voices.

AWA DANCE sits at the intersection of three areas: Dance + Leadership + Women & Girls issues.

We aim to produce change by offering our participants spaces to grow their leadership skills, with  dance and leadership workshops, opportunites for women and our girls in dance festival. We consider ourselves a participant led organisation: we gather data, we listen to feedback, take action and include our participants in the decision making process of our activities.

We are committed to gender equality, intersectional feminism and our DANCE values (Dream big, take Action, Navigate the world, Create an artistic and leadership voice and Empower others). These commitments lead our actions, activities and partnerships.

We are also a certified Arts Award Center by Trinity College London

We are winners of the Acquisition International Non-Profit Awards 2023 as “Most Empowering Women in Dance Charity” and “Most Empowering Women & Girls Advocacy Organisation”

Message from our Director Avatâra Ayuso

Welcome to AWA DANCE,

the charity where women and girls thrive as creative leaders! We are here to support  women and teenage girls in the UK, offering a platform for them to become the leaders they want to be. We encourage them to lead from within (who are you, what are your values, what does the experience of your body tell you about yourself and your reality), to impact the world they live in.

AWA DANCE was born out of my personal frustration with the inequalities of our societies and at the same time my fascination with the amount of incredible women and girls I met through my work as a choreographer across the world. Despite the amount of leadership and artistic talent and commitment to make things better, women and girls were not at the forefront, they were not being listened or supported. Why? What is stopping them from developing their full potential as leaders?”   My answer was to create a platform to offer a brave and safe space for change to happen, using dance as the catalyst to understand leadership differently. AWA DANCE was (is) my answer.

You all have a place here. We are looking forward to meeting you and make the world a better place for everyone

Why do we exist?

  • We believe women have an instrumental place in the society, culture and economy of the 21st century and don’t deserve to be left aside by institutional, structural and gender barriers. 
  • We admire the women and girls of the world. They are astonishing, creative forces of nature, whose energy and power can contribute to change.
  • We want to empower the female perspective in society and the arts.
  • We believe equality is essential for any society to flourish in the 21st century.
  • We believe dance is a powerful tool to connect deeply with our body (soul, heart and guts), helping us to transcend social, political and cultural boundaries in order to connect with each other.
  • We believe in leadership as a way to take ownership of your own life and impact the lives of others.


How do we do it?

  • By creating the conditions and programmes where women and girls feel safe to explore their leadership style creating models outside the established infrastructures.
  • By building a network of creative, confident and inspirational women that aspire to co-create the future and contribute to change by actively engaging, reflecting and generating conversations on the challenges of 21st century society.
  • By sharing our DANCE values (dream, act, navigate, create and empower) and other resources as a toolkit for a life changing, thought-provoking and creative leadership journey.
  • By giving visibility to and raising awareness of the extraordinary inequality in the dance sector, as a reflection of our society, including men in the conversation.


Gender Equality

We align ourselves with the United Nations Sustainable goal number 5 on Gender Equality: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. Women’s and girls equal participation in decision making is crucial to achieve gender parity in the wider society and dance sector. Our programmes and research aim to offer the training and opportunities for all women and girls to be agents of change and contribute to make the world a better place. Our programmes contribute to the United Nations 17 sustainable goals


If it’s not intersectional is not feminism. We recognised that systems of oppression impact people differently based on their race, class, ability, sexuality, and other characteristics. While “mainstream feminism” may focus only (or primarily) on gender or sex, intersectional feminism understands that oppression is an interlocking system.

Our Values

Our D.A.N.C.E. values; Dream big, Act now, Navigate the world, Create your artistic and Leadership voice, and Empower yourself and others, are what guide our activities and programmes. They are at the core of everything we do to guide our decisions as well as develop new ideas and partnerships.

What do we mean by Women ?

AWA DANCE we believe there is no wrong way to be. We are an inclusive charity that champions all who identify as women

Dare to dream the future you want