A wheelchair dance team is empowering girls across the globe.
Based in Los Angeles, the Rollettes, a group of six women, travel across U.S. and internationally to perform.
The team also holds the Rollettes Experience each year, a summer camp that brings girls from all over, empowering them through dance and community.
The group’s founder, Chelsie Hill, 27, says she wants to provide for others what the Rollettes was for her. She founded the team two years after she was paralyzed from the waist down in a car accident.
“I was a dancer my entire life, so becoming paralyzed, I really was searching for friends that were like me and that’s really how this all started,” Hill told InsideEdition.com. “I just really wanted friends and I reached out to girls via social media that also [had] spinal cord injuries.”
That meetup eventually morphed into what is now the Rollettes, which was officially established in 2012. Hill said the group has motivated her to keep pushing forward.
“Being able to have this group of women years later and throughout my entire life of becoming injured I think has been the only reason why I have been so positive and it’s given me this new purpose where I can wake up every day,” Hill said. “I have people that are counting on me.”
Conner Lundius, 26, joined the group four years ago after being injured in a car crash and slowly worked her way up to becoming a full-time member of the team. She found them through Instagram.
“Dance was actually the first major attraction with me with the Rollettes just because I connected to that so well,” Lundius said.
But her involvement with the team became about so much more than that. The team is helping the women feel less alone while empowering other women in wheelchairs.
Hill said she has advice for anyone who may be struggling.
“Find a group of people or find someone that is like you,” Hill said. “It starts to make you feel like you're not alone anymore and when I started doing that, I started feeling like myself again.
“I started to be able to go out in person and feel like I wasn't the only person they were staring at. There was two of us or three of us.”