Target: Street Yoga
Goal: Increase awareness of this nonprofit and support their accomplishments in helping at-risk youth find yoga so they can begin healing.
At-risk youth in North America suffer from traumatic experiences like poverty, homelessness, abuse, or addiction that cause deep emotional and behavioral problems. Volunteers at Street Yoga are trained to address and potentially heal the problems that at-risk youth struggle with by teaching them yoga, breathing techniques, and positive communication. Volunteers go to shelters and schools to reach out to these troubled kids.
Street Yoga uses yoga to serve kids healing from trauma, depression, PTSD, and anxiety. The poses and techniques that the kids are taught and can keep practicing throughout their lives have been proven to restore mind and body health. Street Yoga hopes that continual positive connection with youth will help them overcome their trauma and lead healthy lives.
Street Yoga started in Portland, Ore. 10 years ago. Now, there are trained volunteers reaching over 1,000 individuals per year in cities like Seattle, Toronto, New York, Minneapolis, Denver, San Diego, Milwaukee, Houston, and Tucson. The program is growing because it works. Kids in the program feel better, do better, and will grow up with knowledge about their bodies and minds; knowledge that is a tool unparalleled in its immediate power to heal.
Street Yoga is a platform for kids to learn about the healing benefits of yoga. Programs focus on things like physical strength, balance, and flexibility. These physical elements of yoga are taught with communication that helps kids connect their physical self to their spiritual self. For instance, they are taught the connection between finding balance on their feet as well as in their mind throughout the day.
Programs also focus on tools for self-soothing in times of stress that cause anger or sadness like intention, breathing, self-awareness, focus, and perseverance. These are the first steps in helping at-risk youth overcome the problems they suffer from. Next steps include learning interpersonal skills to encourage healthy community connections and learning self-management and goal setting to increase self-confidence, self-reflection, and healthy creative expression.
Street Yoga gives the gift of yoga to at-risk youth. The nonprofit wants to share the healing power of yoga with at-risk youth because these kids deserve compassion like any other youth, but are not necessarily shown that compassion through traditional means like family or spiritual practice. Yoga gives them the ability to find and accept compassion from different sources, to overcome difficult moments when they are not shown enough love, and to grow with a healthy mind and body.
Support Street Yoga’s programs because they offer something new to the world by empowering at-risk youth to create a space inside themselves where they can shine bright.
Dear Street Yoga,
Your service to at-risk youth struggling with emotional and behavioral problems is inspiring. By teaching yoga to America’s most vulnerable youth, you are sharing compassion and tools that have the power to change lives forever.
Children are our future. By encouraging them to start leading healthy lives, you are changing the future. Thank you for bringing yoga to the street.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: juicefeasting.blogspot.com