Strictly Come Dancing star thanks Barclaycard staff ahead of their charity show in Northampton

Group shot of Contestants and dancers and Kristina Rihanoff
Group shot of Contestants and dancers and Kristina Rihanoff

Former Strictly Come Dancing star Kristina Rihanoff met staff at Northampton's Barclaycard ahead of a dance show raising money for her children's charity.

Kristina visited one of the training sessions at Step By Step Dance School in Henry Street ahead of Strictly Barclaycard at the Deco Theatre in Northampton on Thursday, March 2.

Sheena Widdowfield, Lee Whitestone and Kristina Rihanoff

Sheena Widdowfield, Lee Whitestone and Kristina Rihanoff

They have had seven weeks to train and will be performing either a waltz or quickstep and then a freestyle dance of their choice. All proceeds from the show will be going to Dot Com Children’s Foundation (DotComcf.org)

Kristina, one of the judges for the show and also one of the patrons of Dot Com, came along to watch a training session.

She said: “I've been working with the charity for 7 years and I'm very passionate about the work we do in schools with children.

"Through age appropriate journals we are helping children to learn and understand most difficult and scary situations in life. We are trying to reach to every child and encourage children to be confident and positive whatever the background they come from. In our journals we raise very important issues like gun crime , grooming , bullying and etc.

Helen Reynolds, Caroline Pugh and Kristina Rihanoff

Helen Reynolds, Caroline Pugh and Kristina Rihanoff

"We give children a voice and tools to speak up if they feel abused troubled or neglected," she added.

"They learn how to protect themselves and how to communicate with adults. Most adults would risk their own life to protect a child in danger, but there are thousands of children who suffer problems such as bullying, violence or abuse which stay hidden if they cannot ask for help. My mission as the patron of the charity and the mission of the Dot Com Children's Foundation is to provide the programme for as many children as possible in schools across the country.

"I'm delighted to see that Barclaycard employees and local dancers join forces to help my charity. Dancing is a wonderful tool to make a difference in this world and help the next generation to succeed in life.

"I look forward to judging the competition, to meet everyone who's coming to support the event and make a difference with DotCom learning programme.

Organiser Caroline Pugh added: “Everyone is working so hard to make this show a success. The enthusiasm and drive from all the contestants and dancers cannot be faulted. Fellow organiser, Helen Reynolds, and I want to make this show the best one yet and can’t wait for show day. The support we have received again this year is unbelievable and we cannot thank everyone enough!”

Tickets for the show, which starts at 7pm, can be bought from www.decotickets.co.uk or by calling the box office on: 01604 622749