AN amazing talent has just returned from America with a Special Olympics silver medal hanging around her neck.

One of 10 skiers representing Great Britain, dedicated Hannah Dempsey’s success on the slopes of Idaho comes a year after she picked up skiing medals in Italy.

The multi-talented 20-year-old has also won swimming medals in the Special Olympics in 2006 and has since travelled to Germany to show case her blossoming dance career on the stage.

Hannah’s story began at Bromley-based Magpie Dance in 2003. The keen break dancer was nurtured and given confidence by the charity which helps those with learning difficulties gain self-belief through the arts.

Bromley-resident Hannah, who has Down’s syndrome, said: “When I am on stage with the audience standing up and clapping it makes me feel excited and gives me a happy feeling. It made my heart decide to follow.

“It is my destiny because it is one thing that makes me special and I love to dance day and night.”

News Shopper: Magpie Dance helped Hannah build her confidence and skills

The member of Sharks Swimming Club in Mottingham added: “I keep going to Magpie because I have got some brilliant friends and I like making people laugh and taking care of my friends at Magpie.

“It feels like I am floating like a ballerina.”

Despite her busy schedule and spending most of her week in Banbury as a member of the Anjali dance company, Hannah still finds time to return to Magpie Dance sessions each Saturday.

Magpie Dance receives no regular funding and News Shopper is helping to raise £100,000 for the charity which helps transform the lives of disabled people around south-east London and north Kent.

Hannah's mum Lynne said: "Magpie has developed to give people these opportunities that they wouldn't have had if the charity wasn't there.

"It's been a fantastic stepping stone and Hannah certainly wouldn't have a career in dance if it wasn't for Magpie."

Impressed with Hannah’s talents, the South East Dance company has recently commissioned director Sergio Cruz to create a film called ‘Hannah’ which explores her skills, ambitions and dreams.

“I am excited by everything that is going on,” Hannah said.

“I means I can show people what I can do. I want to move onto something that I haven’t done yet and I would love to teach dance.

“I will keep working hard and I will change people’s mind about me.”

News Shopper: Impressed with Hannah’s talents, the South East Dance company has recently commissioned a film called ‘Hannah’

How to donate

Our Help Magpie Fly campaign is hoping to raise £100,000 to help Magpie Dance keep supporting 150 keen dancers with learning disabilities.

Every little helps and every penny raised will go to Magpie so the charity can continue its valuable community service.

Send your donations to Help Magpie Fly, News Shopper, Mega House, Crest View Drive, Petts Wood, BR5 1BT.

Cheques should be made payable to Magpie Dance.

Thanks to Mr B Denny and M Smith who have already contributed to help secure Magpie’s future.

If you want more details about the charity or want to volunteer call 020 8290 6633 or visit