July 3, 2020
For the past 39 years, Marquicia Jones-Woods has devoted her life to the children of the West End.
Born and raised in the neighborhood, Jones-Woods — known affectionately as Ms. Quicy — began her outreach when she was just a teenager.
“I started the children's group as a kid basically,” she says. “I wanted to give the kids in my community something to do because there was just so much going on and I was trying to find positive ways for them to have a day that was filled with fun instead of just the hustle and bustle of everything that was going on around us in public housing.”
She began with beautification projects — painting rocks and benches, planting flowers, picking up trash — and going to church and Bible study, where the kids could get a free meal. Then she added in the arts, creating short plays and dances to “keep them engaged,” she says. “The dance piece took off.”
“The girls were really into that because as the boys got older, they started to get into sports, so I was left with all these girls, trying to do stuff that they liked, that entertained them, that kept them coming every day,” she says.
Thus the Q-Kidz Dance Team was born — even though Jones-Woods herself has no personal dance background.
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Zummo, M. (2020, July 3). The West End's Q-Kidz Dance Studio has been a pivotal positive community presence for 39 years. CityBeat. Retrieved from http://www.citybeat.com