Life April 2012
… Learn the basics
World Y.O.G.A. Project in Boulder, Colorado!
Autism, speaks awareness and YOGA Therapy
WWW.WORLDYOGAPROJECT.ORG ▪ APRIL 2012 COPYRIGHT © 2012 Y.O.G.A. FOUNDATION, INC.
Dear Readers, Welcome to World Y.O.G.A. Life magazine, published by our 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, World Y.O.G.A. Project (WYP)! We have specifically designed World Y.O.G.A. Life to be a comprehensive resource for all things yoga, nutritious, socially conscious, educational, healing, informative, and fun! This is
the beginning of an incredible journey! Enjoy! I would like to thank the entire WYP team of amazing, powerful, intelligent women that I have the pleasure of working with and the honor of calling each of them ‘friend.’ Thank you for being a part of this vision and work. And to the contributing writers of World Y.O.G.A. Life, thank you for sharing your voice with us through written words weaved into story in your
(Writer/Entertainment Guru and Yoga Enthusiast) Features and Ed. Teacher Talk Column Writer
Features and Yoga Teacher Talk Column Writer
articles and columns. When people ask me about my work, I have never been more clear about the answer until now. My life has been a long journey of working through, over, under, and around my issues with self-esteem and positive self-image. What I have created with my businesses (SANKHYA Yoga and AYH Live Foods) and non-profit (World Y.O.G.A. Project) is the culmination of pure love that I have for all human beings – every shape, size, age, color, and gender, our mother earth and all that she generously, continuously, and in abundance provides for us, and the love that I have worked so hard and learned to cultivate for myself. It is this love that I hope you feel, and that I want you to take from every experience with us. Infuse it into your own life journey and works, and then share as much of it as possible with the world! Never ending gratitude and LOVE,
Yoga 101 Column Writer
Rad Reads Column Writer
Culinary Creations Column Writer
Kae Lani Kennedy
(Philadelphia based writer; has been practicing yoga since she was 10. Instructed yoga classes at her University during her time as a student in Germany.) Features and Family Fun Column Writer
High School Intern: Anthony Torrance Science Leadership Academy High School Student Voice Column Writer
Keirra Strayhorn Winters Editor-in-Chief World Y.O.G.A. Life magazine
Keirra Strayhorn Winters Editor-in-Chief
Special thanks to my wonderful family and friends. Thank you all so much for EVERYTHING! I Love You!
Send our writers a letter to firstname.lastname@example.org Place in Subject Line: ATTN: First Name, Last Name of Writer
Contents Cover 3 ▪ World Y.O.G.A. Project in Boulder
Features 9 ▪ Autism & Yoga Therapy 13 ▪ Local Yoga Heroes: SAW, University of Pennsylvania
Events & workshops 17 ▪ World Wellness! 2012… and More
Columns 6 ▪ YOGA 101 8 ▪ Rad Reads 7 ▪ Teacher Talk 12 ▪ Culinary Creations 15 ▪ Family Fun 16 ▪ Student Voice
is BIG… in
BOULDER ARTICLE BY STEPHANIE CIEPLINSKI World Y.O.G.A. Project, in Boulder - a city well known for its scenic mountains, rock climbing, and hippie happiness – is firmly rooted in and claimed its place, as a favorite in the Rockies. Flatirons Elementary School in Boulder, Colorado, this Spring will incorporate World Y.O.G.A. Project (WYP) yoga classes and programs as part of their curriculum physical education classes. Loren Tillotson, Faltirons Elementary School Physical Education teacher, will be working with World Y.O.G.A. Project certified yoga teachers, Kaitlin Saragusa, Jennifer Brindley, and Gillian Pierce to facilitate four to six classes per week for the entire student population. All of the WYP yoga teachers are volunteers under Mid-region Director for World Y.O.G.A. Project, Patricia “Trish” Zornio. I have not had the pleasure to journey to Boulder, CO, but from what I recently learned it's quite the hot spot for an amazing yoga practice and it is abundant with yoga instructors. If that wasn't enough to peek my interest, it was that World Yoga Project, Mid-region Director, Trish Zornio has ensured the development of the WYP Yoga Program in a handful of local schools in Colorado. The program is running smoothly in two schools in Boulder with a third school gearing up for WYP yoga classes this Spring 2012! Over satellite waves of communication, my conversation with Trish bubbles with her enthusiasm for the art of yoga, and her excitement for the first semester of the yoga classes to be completed. She is glad to be quickly receiving notice from other schools and is elated that more interest in the WYP program has begun to peak. Not to mention, she has been receiving numerous ‘thank you's’ and positive feedback from one school that has already completed its first semester.
Patricia's start into the practice of yoga was unusual. Trish, as she's preferably called, is an experienced rock climber and had never tried yoga until a friend suggested she try it in order to help her develop her skills as a climber. In the beginning, she practiced Bikram Yoga, a.k.a. "Hot Yoga" (usually taught in a room that is 95-105° degrees Fahrenheit). She focused on holding her positions and learned discipline and balance. After starting with Bikram Yoga, she began to broaden her practice by trying other types of yoga. Trish says that she soon learned to love her new practice more than climbing. She still climbs, but yoga became a quick love of hers and she often spends more time practicing yoga than climbing. Trish found that yoga gave her a new foundation and poise to her movement in everything that she did, especially rock climbing. Invigorated with her love of the (yoga) practice and her friendly disposition, Trish was the perfect choice for Mid-Regional Director of the World Yoga Project in Boulder, CO. She coordinates the logistics of the program and advocates World Y.O.G.A. Project’s program to other prospective schools that want to be involved in engaging their students in a mind and body activity. She also is deeply dedicated to the success of the classes and the progress that the students and faculty are making during their first semesters of the program. She attends classes at the schools and sits in her normal street clothes. She does this to remind the students that they don't need to dress in tight exercise clothes in order to practice. In fact, many people who have been practicing for years find that often the time to practice yoga is when one is not prepared or dressed in “yoga” pants and spandex tops. This is demonstrating a wonderful lesson to children about the spontaneity of yoga practice, being adaptable, and translating that easy way of living and going with the flow, into their everyday life. Trish attends classes and sometimes will join in along with the students and exhibits her own love of the practice.
Trish's enthusiasm and passion for the art continues to aid not only her students, but her staff as well. She enjoys working with Boulder's two yoga instructors: Gillian Pierce and Raj Seymour. Before she found them Trish set high standards for her prospective yoga teachers. She explains to me that she wasn't just looking for a yoga teacher. There are plenty of yoga instructors in Boulder. She was looking for qualified people who could really connect with children emotionally and be of support. Once she met Raj Seymour and Gillian Pierce, she knew she made a good decision when beginning her staff. She is continuously reminded of this when observing their classes. Two schools are currently involved in the World Y.O.G.A. Project (WYP) in Boulder, and a third is in the process of beginning the program. The two schools, one of which has completed its first semester of the program are Crossroads School and September High School. Crossroads School is an alternative middle school for students who suffer from mental/emotional problems and behavioral issues. Gillian has been an asset to the students in her class because not only can she guide her students through their practice, but she connects with them emotionally and is very soothing. Raj Seymour teaches the older students who attend September High School. He works extremely well with older teenagers and their reactions to this unfamiliar way (for most students) of moving and being active. A goal for Trish and her dedicated teachers is to not only teach the students while they are in class, but also teach them how to utilize what they learn, so that long after they are done with the class, they can retain the information and develop it in a way that is purposeful and positive. It helps them to expand on their practice to better their physical and emotional contentment, whether the instructor is there or not.
Trish explains the initial reactions some of the students have when they are first introduced to Yoga. "They have their own pre-existing concepts of what yoga is," Trish says. It is a process of exploration for them each and every time they enter the classroom. One student entered a class at Crossroads School exclaiming, "Yoga is stupid, it's for girls. I'm not doing it!" Although, he stubbornly refused to take off his shoes, socks, and even enter the room, Trish says he eventually came into the room and sat through the class. By the end of the class the athletic, muscular, football-playing teenager had stripped his feet of shoes and socks and was attempting the bending and twisting like the rest of the class. He not only left the class thanking the teacher for a great yoga session, but he continued to exclaim in amazement that "Yoga is hard, it could help me improve playing in football!" Trish goes on to put in plain words, “if there is anything that I've learned from the (yoga) practice it's that everyone responds to it in his or her own, unique way, and gets a different type of fulfillment from it.” The football player from Crossroads School, for instance, realized that the stretching and discipline could aid him in other physical areas of his life in which he wanted to excel. In another case, a twelve year-old girl Gillian (WYP Yoga Teacher) taught, came to class declaring excitedly that she had done her ‘homework’. Gillian had requested that her students go home, and for a nice amount of time, concentrate on their breathing. They were to take notice of how it affected them. The girl told Gillian how she had been arguing with her mother. They had been going back and forth, yelling. The fight was escalating and becoming frustrating for both her and her mother. She proceeded to tell her mother that she just needed a quiet moment. She remembered what Gillian had told her about concentrating on her breath. The girl breathed. She inhaled and exhaled, and after about two minutes, her frustration and anger at her mother was slowly beginning to fade. She professed to Gillian that after just those few minutes she not only realized that the fighting was silly, but that she had been wrong and apologized to her mother. "That's why we do what we do," both Gillian and Trish realized. It's about children who attend class and while of some them seemingly are not paying attention, they are listening and taking in what is being said to them. "The kids are intellectual sponges," Trish explains to me. "They understand much more than we give them credit for." It is amazing to hear that students, regardless of their age, will leave their yoga classes in an altered, more positive mood, more from when they walked in. It is impossible to tell if they have truly had an internal realization, but it is quite evident that they leave in a calmer, more peaceful state of mind. They have a very logical, learned response to the technique and can often perform difficult poses that adult yogis have been attempting to perfect for years. Some well-practiced adults at times, find themselves at a loss to bend in the ways in which the children can contort their bodies. Not only do the kids get to learn the poses, but they also get to share their experiences in class. They discuss how yoga is helping them in their day-to-day lives, ranging from improved physically flexibility to increased emotional peace. Something special is happening, and they are off to a progressively successful start out in Boulder, CO - thanks to Trish and her well-chosen yoga instructors. They are inspiring children and helping them become more content, fulfilled individuals, as well as more dedicated and focused students!
Creating a World…
…of Peace, Love, & Y.O.G.A.! World Y.O.G.A. Project, is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, providing FREE yoga classes to children in schools all over the world. Our mission is to provide solutions for cultivating generations of healthy children and youth, creating community within schools, and partnering with parents to create a world of peace, love, and Y.O.G.A.! Contact Us: Tel: 800-716-1670 Email: email@example.com
Yoga Alliance Registered, 95 Hour Children’s Yoga Teacher Training $950 Coming in July 2012! Register Now!
VOLUNTEER DONATE GET INVOLVED! www.worldyogaproject.org
Yoga101 COLUMN BY JESSICA DIXON
Relaxation and de-stressing the mind is important and needed for good health. The many responsibilities that we have in our everyday lives can at times be overwhelming. Adopting an practice such as yoga and learning the basic, fundamental poses can be remarkably beneficial.
One great and essential yoga pose that can help with
relaxation is shavasana:
Shavasana, Sanskrit for “corpse” pose, is a relaxing position, in which you lay on your back in a meditative state. The purpose of this asana is to give rest to the entire body, mind, and nervous system. This pose can also be especially relaxing and restorative after a yoga practice. The first step in preparation for shavasana is to lie down on your yoga mat or carpet in a supine (or straight line) position. Keep your head and neck straight in alignment, or turn your head slightly to the left or right if you need to further relax and unwind. In a complete state of rest without tension, let your arms fall out to the sides, about 8-10 inches from your body with your palms facing up. Finally in shavasana, gently close your eyes, and begin breathing at a normal, rhythmic pace. Suggested length of time in pose, 5 – 10 minutes.
Teacher Talk, with YOGA Instructor Rachel Cama ARTICLE BY KELLY CUNANE Yoga is a physical, mental, and spiritual practice with origins in the East. “Yoga” means “to yoke” or “union” which is the practice that unites the body and mind by use of physical exercises (asanas) breathing, and meditation. Yoga works with all muscles and systems of the body and also serves to calm the mind. This is how Rachel Cama, a certified yoga instructor, describes her profession. Cama began training as a yoga teacher in 2010 solely to deepen her own practice, having no intentions of teaching others. By the end of training, she felt compelled to help people through yoga because she discovered yoga as a therapeutic, healing modality. She realized yoga’s power to heal the mind of stress related issues - and even more serious mental illness. Shortly after, she decided to become a resident at the Himalayan Institute, a center for yoga and holistic living located in Wayne County, Pennsylvania. Cama has a passion for music as a fulltime classical musician. “My life was intensely stressful and competitive. I realized the effects yoga had on my mind and that the practice was beneficial to my life. Literally, it kept me sane!” For Cama, a key basic concept in yoga is that we are born perfect - so we already are perfect. Being a classic perfectionist this was of great comfort for her!
It taught her to have compassion for others and to not be so hard on herself. Cama teaches roughly ten classes a week along with private sessions with students. “I do a lot of work with “special” populations ranging from those dealing with mental illness such as schizophrenia and addiction recovery clients - to seniors and teenagers with eating disorders and/or anxiety. It is a challenge teaching such diverse groups of people, but I love it,” Cama explained. Working with high school students is Cama’s favorite age group because she can connect to them - their struggles with academic pressures, body image, and self-esteem issues. Even beginning yoga students note that they, overall, feel more calm and energized throughout the day and that their bodies function better. Cama said during class the students remarked that “yoga had helped them reduce stress they felt from academic pressures in their lives.” Some students becomeinterested in spiritual aspects and meditation. Other students are more into the great effects that yoga has on the body. Her idea is to provide stress-reducing tools that they can use throughout their lives or encourage them to pursue learning yoga in other means on their own. Either way, they have outlets toreduce the stress of their busy lives. From experiences in her personal life and learning the nurturing philosophy of yoga, Rachel Cama is convinced that everyone can benefit from this Eastern healing art.
SANKHYA YOGA~SKIN and BODY~NUTRITION 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training â€“ March 2013 (Yoga Alliance registered, one month intensive, 200 Hour certification)
SANKHYA Solutions for Whole Body Wellness 700 North 3rd Street Philadelphia, PA 19123 Tel: 855-SANKHYA firstname.lastname@example.org www.sankhyayoga.com
Rad Reads COLUMN BY MICHELLE GOLOBISH
After practicing yoga grab one of these books and feed your freshly expanded mind.
NOVEL The Giver by Lois Lowry A great reader for yogis aged 8 and older, this 1994 Newberry Award winner depicts life in a dystopian society from the viewpoint of 12-year old Jonas. Jonas has just been selected to be the next Receiver for the community. He is charged with holding all of the memories of how life once was, before the regimented control of the Community. However, these memories alter the way Jonas sees his world and make him question if there are other societies, different than his own.
BLOG Y is for Yogini - http://www.yisforyogini.com Sarcastic and witty yogini Lo shares her thoughts on life, breath, and yoga. Whether contemplating the meaning of her practice or exploring what the color of our yoga mat says about us, Lo brings levity and insight.
WEBSITE Yoganonymous – http://yoganonymous.org A website addressing everything yoga. Teachers, classes, events, and retreats, all carefully organized by date and region can be found on this website. With a variety of articles to discuss challenging poses, tips to relieve stress, and nutrition advice, Yoganonymous has something for everyone who is interested in yoga.
FOR PARENTS AND CHILDREN My Daddy is a Pretzel: Yoga for Parents and Kids by Baron Baptiste, Illus. by Sophie Fatus This colorfully illustrated children’s book introduces a range of yoga postures within the context of a classroom discussion about the professions of the children’s parents There are illustrations of the postures introduced, steps for how to get into the postures, and background on the meaning of the posture and how to incorporate it into daily life. This book is great for parents of both younger and older children; it is a great way to practice as a family.
CHILDREN’S BOOKS The Quiet Book by Deborah Underwood, Illus. by Renata Liwska This picture book addresses different types of quiet that someone may experience. Children learn that they can experience quiet in many ways and in many different situations. The quieting of the mind and body is necessary for achieving the fullest expression of one’s asana practice. The Quiet Book relates the importance of being comfortable in the quiet.
& YOGA Therapy
PHOTOS PROVIDED BY SPECTRUM YOGA THERAPY ARTICLE BY KAE LANI KENNEDY The month of April is Autism Awareness Month, where families with autistic family members educate the community on what life is like with autism. When a child is diagnosed with Autism, it can be a frightening time for parents. Many questions arise such as “will my child get along with other children”, “will they be able to speak”, and “will I be able to develop a relationship with them?” Many times the answer is undefined as the spectrum for Autism is so vast and can vary from one individual to the next, and in many cases, change from day to day. What is Autism? Autism is classified as a complex neurobiological disorder characterized by varying degrees of impairment in communications and social abilities as well as repetitive behaviors. Many individuals who are diagnosed as having Autism are described as being “on the spectrum”, meaning Autism can range from being very mild to severe. Symptoms can include resistance to change, difficulty expressing needs, repetition of words or movements, tantrums, as well as a preference to be alone. What causes Autism? It is unknown how children develop Autism or what causes the condition. However, many doctors theorize that an exposure to environmental stresses in the months prior to and after birth can increase the risk. These environmental stresses may include viral infections, metabolic imbalances, and other toxins. Because it is hard to pin point exactly what causes autism, it’s difficult for doctors to find treatments. Due to the everchanging state of mind, methods to treat the disorder vary and are often applied through trial and error. Challenges Families Encounter Families with an autistic child may encounter obstacles, but they find ways everyday to persevere. One of the largest challenges parents are encountering with their autistic children is building a relationship. Because autistic children have trouble understanding other people’s emotions, bonding with anyone can be a struggle. Raising a child with autism can also extremely stressful on parents, they want their children to interact with others and be integrated into society; however, it is never known when an incident will arise where the interaction with others becomes too much for an autistic child. Therapies for Autism With Autism affecting 1 in 88 American children, many parents are seeking their own answers and becoming open to alternative therapies that treat the whole body, rather than just the symptoms. Some parents explore alternative diets of organic and hormone-free foods.
Other parents seek detoxification and even oxygenation of the body to help rid of toxins and bring more oxygen to the brain. However, in recent years, many parents are embracing therapy through yoga. It has been known that yoga brings many benefits to the body and the mind. People who practice yoga regularly report relief from pain, they have more energy, and they become more balanced. Yoga is also known to not only create lean muscles and promote flexibility, but it also reduces stress and helps us slow and calm our minds and bodies through deep breathing and slow movements. According to Scott Anderson (photo left), founder of Spectrum Yoga Therapy in Blue Mounds, Wisconsin, research shows that those with autism are in a constant state of stress, similar to those suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Their minds are always in a mode of fight or flight, anticipating and waiting for something to happen. Using Spectrum Yoga Therapy’s five pose “recipe,” they are able to bring autistic children out of “Fight or Flight” mode, and into “Rest and Digest” state. Observing Class Spectrum Yoga Therapy is a non-profit organization bringing yoga therapy to those with autism. Spectrum Yoga Therapy has been providing yoga therapy for those with autism for over eight years, and as of recently, they joined in research along side of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds. Together, they have been studying the effects of yoga therapy on the minds and bodies of the autistic students they teach. Each class consists of twelve students and twelve instructors, all trained for one-on-one sessions with students with autism. Naturally, at the beginning of class, students are displaying common signs of autism; spinning, yelling, clapping or even rocking. But within two minutes from the beginning of class, everyone is calm and silent, which is a hard feat to accomplish when dealing with autistic children. Students engage in a five-pose “recipe” meant for autonomic down regulation, meaning bringing them down out of a stressful state into a calming and peaceful state. After class, parents share stories of how transitioning is easier after children participate in yoga class. For autistic individuals, transitioning is difficult to cope with. Going from being at home to transitioning to going to the grocery store is difficult to accept and can sometimes take several hours to come to terms with. However, parents are noticing that after a class with Spectrum Yoga Therapy, their children are beginning to go with the flow. Exploring the Benefits of Yoga Therapy When yoga is brought to autistic children, the findings are impressive. Through a new yoga-based treatment called Integrated Movement Therapy (IMT), studies show that autistic children are improving their social and
communication skills. Children with autism have trouble perceiving sensory information. But with yoga therapy, autistic children are improving their ability to process sensory information, which is improving motor skills, and further developing their self-esteem. Many children are finding, through yoga, physical and emotional relief from their symptoms. Compared to other therapies, yoga is helping autistic children develop tools to calm and comfort themselves through a variety of poses, breathing practices, and visualizations. Those with autism are known to be able to relate to objects more so than people. Yoga poses such as Mountain, Tree, and Down Dog are very engaging for autistic children. Parents are also finding that practicing yoga with their autistic children helps with their issues with building relationships. As children become more aware of their bodies, they begin to become astutely mindful of their surrounds and the people they interact with. They begin developing stronger bonds with their parents; something that doctors tell many parents will never happen due to the disorder. What is Next for Yoga Therapy and Families with Autistic Children? Therapy for autistic children through yoga is still new, but growing rapidly in its popularity. In the case of Spectrum Yoga Therapy, which has now been in operation for eight years, anecdotal instances are telling them theyâ€™re on to something. Many more studies are also coming out exploring the physical and mental benefits. Yoga therapy is not only helping autistic children and families with their day-to-day challenges, but it has been proven to balance and be a tool of support in the lives of autistic children for years to come.
JAR BAR TALKS JUICES, SALADS, DESSERTS, AND MORE! COLUMN BY EILEEN HOLZER
Walking into JAR BAR is like stepping into a garden. Immediately you are consumed by the refreshing aroma and sight of crisp vegetables. JAR BAR, located on 113 South 12th Street, is the newest 100% raw, vegan and glutenfree cafe from Joel Odhner and Jennifer Richmond. You may recognize their names from their popular Catalyst Cleanse detox system. JAR BAR has one great philosophy, to live and eat by: use pure, simple ingredients. Why is natural the way to live? Eating whole pure foods works with your body, providing nutrients and energy. The Catalyst Cleanse, as well as the salads, made-to-order vegetable and fruit juices, elixirs and even deserts (yes, there is a vegan, raw and gluten-free chocolate mousse pie!) will reset your body, giving your digestive system and your mind a healthy cleanse of unneeded toxins. Sounds a little bit like yoga, right?! Sipping on possibly the best strawberry banana hemp milk smoothie I have ever tasted, I sat down with Joel to talk kale, milk alternatives, and how delicious and beneficial drinking your fruits and veggies can be. For some, it may be difficult to imagine that dishes without milk, eggs, or butter would still be packed with incredible flavor. JAR BAR shows us otherwise. I found that hemp milk proved to be very tasty and a great compliment in the fruit smoothie. JAR BAR also uses fabulous dairy milk substitutes, such as hemp milk, coconut water, and almond butter in their smoothies. All are foods you can use to “veganize” your dishes at home.
I have been an advocate of kale for quite some time now but I had to ask, “Just why is kale so great?” Kale is full of antioxidants, vitamins, and it is known to be packed with cancer-preventing benefits. The best part about this super food is the countless ways you can use it! Kale can be sautéed, roasted, grilled, steamed, and of course, it can be used raw. Kale is a favorite at JAR BAR, from a revitalizing Strawberry Kale Lemonade to the Asian Kale Salad, complete with marinated kale, cabbage, red pepper, and scallions, topped of with sesame seeds and a sesame ginger dressing. Joel let us in on a perfect and easy Spring Kale Salad recipe. Throw in some quinoa and you have a balanced and delicious meal. JAR BAR is the perfect stop for yogis, vegans, vegetarians, and foodies alike to mindfully entice your appetite this spring and summer.
RECIPE: RECIPE PROVIDED BY JAR BAR OWNER JOEL ODHNER SPRING KALE SALAD Ingredients: Kale Olive Oil Lemon Red Peppers Hemp Seeds or Chia Seeds Sea Salt & Black Pepper to Taste
Directions: In a large mixing bowl, add kale, fresh lemon juice, and a drizzle of olive oil. Massage the kale with the olive oil and lemon juice until it becomes soft, about 3 minutes. Chop red peppers and add to salad. Sprinkle with hemp or chia seeds for added texture and nutrients. Sea salt and pepper to taste. Remember this is a great base salad. Add mangos, avocadoes, and maybe even raw honey for a sweeter version. Get creative!
JAR BAR LIMITED TIME OFFER for the month of April 2012 ONLY!: Free 8oz Juice with the Purchase of any entrée! Promotion Details: email email@example.com and place 'JAR BAR Coupon' in the Subject Line to Claim Your Coupon Code.
World ARTICLE BY KELLY CUNANE
Everyday - people in our communities struggle with problems financially and domestically, but do we ever stop and consider the problems others may have in different regions the world? Considering our sometimes hectic and fast paced lifestyles, probably not… but Alexandra Price made it her priority. In 2005, Alexandra Price, a University of Pennsylvania student founded the Student Ambassadors of the World organization. The goal of the organization is to support sustainable solutions for educational, financial, family support, and community development issues afflicting impoverished people abroad. The organization’s main focus is to increase awareness by organizing student-led cultural events and arranging guest speakers from various community-based organizations. Student Ambassadors of the World (SAW), currently has ten members including Alyssa Dickinson, a sophomore studying political science and international development at the University of Pennsylvania. “I joined SAW my freshman year because I wanted not just to learn about problems elsewhere, but because I actually wanted to do something about them,” Dickinson explained. The organization aims to execute at least three events every semester, one for each region of the world. In the past, SAW coordinated a yoga night with SANKHYA Yoga Studio, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to raise awareness and funds for the South East Asia region. They charged a five dollar fee at the door for the evening donation night yoga class. All proceeds went to Himalayan Healthcare, a non-profit organization promoting healthcare, education, and income generation in Nepal.
Dickinson enjoys being a part of the local grassroots and global endeavors developed by SAW, which n turn empower the people they're helping with the implementation of long-term solutions. “Many of our members have traveled all over the world, finding it difficult to ignore the poverty and the problems they witnessed,” said Dickinson. Creating a mission of change for the better quickly became a core value for the University of Pennsylvania’s Student Ambassadors of the World organization. Last semester, Dickinson was the president of the South East Asia region. This semester, she is the Civic House Associates Coalition (CHAC) Liaison. The Civic House is the university’s hub for student services. It prepares students for responsible and effective civic engagement and leadership. As the liaison, her responsibility is to collaborate with other advocacy groups about the resources available to SAW. She also attends monthly meetings and educational workshops. The Student Ambassadors of the World organization is divided into three regions - South East Asia, Latin America, and Africa. For the Lain America region, the group organized a cooking lesson to make empanadas – pastry dough cut into ‘pockets’ and filled with meat and cheese. The proceeds of this event went to Laguna Brava, an organization in Guatemala that fosters conservation and provides education for the native population. An event for the Africa region has not been planned yet for this year, but SAW has previously assembled professor panels to educate students about female genital mutilation and the Rwandan genocide. Another way they raised money for countries in Africa was by having salsa lessons to represent the V-Day Safe House, which helps women combat abuse such as rape, incest, battery, and sex slavery. A henna ‘tattoo’ event was also held to raise funds for Pratit International, an organization started by University of Pennsylvania students to help alleviate poverty in India. Although some events attract more people than others, each event has at least fifteen to sixty people in attendance. Dickinson says that SAW is currently organizing an event to raise awareness about how food choices can influence our local and global communities. “We are expecting approximately twenty to thirty people to show up at the event. I hope that people will leave the event more motivated to act locally and engage globally,” Dickinson said. To promote the events, SAW partners with other groups on campus to spread the word, and they send email blasts to over 200 people. They also pass out flyers throughout campus. The Student Ambassadors of the World organization has been dedicated to improving communities abroad. We all can work together to view the world as one place and consider that everyone, despite their geographical location, should have an opportunity to prosper and live well.
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“They’ve been doing yoga since they were born,” says Iva Kelman referring to her two sons, Jaze, 7, and Ike, 5. “Yoga is so natural for children” continues Iva, “babies just learning to stand up sometimes use their hands to assist themselves as if Down Dog pose!” For Iva, yoga is not just an essential part of her life, but It has become a means for her career. Other than being an artist, a floral designer, and a stay-at-home mom, Iva has been teaching yoga for nine years and has been hired by schools in the Philadelphia area to teach yoga to children ages one to five. In her classes, she sees the effects of yoga on children and how engaged they become by the lessons. “The kids get the chance to burn off some energy,” explains Iva, “and they get to take a break from working hard and sitting all day at school.”
Family INTERVIEW WITH MOM, ARTIST, AND YOGI, IVA KELMAN! COLUMN BY KAE LANI KENNEDY
The children in Iva’s class love the change of pace and the opportunity to channel their energy in a different direction. Through teaching children, Iva has discovered that the children in her classes love ‘chanting’ OM, and that the children they prefer the Vinyasana series, especially when it comes to the variations of the ‘peaceful’ Warrior sequence. In class, kids even make up their own poses. “They inspire me with what they come up with” says Iva, who found some of the new poses so intriguing that she has incorporated them into her own study. Valentine, Spring Tree, Winter Tree, and even Warrior Seven are all poses that the children create and name. The same goes for her sons, who have had a relationship with yoga since infancy.
Iva, who has been practicing yoga for fifteen years, even started teaching “Mommy and Me” classes, just so she could ‘play’ yoga with her newborn sons. Even though they do less yoga together at home in their older age, Iva still ensures that they participate in yoga at school and interact with other yogi children. “I teach all day,” says Iva. As with many yoga instructors, holding a full lesson at home after teaching all day can be tiresome. However, that does not stop Iva and her two sons from engaging in other activities! Iva’s sons attend classes in Capoeira, a form of African-Brazilian martial arts and join soccer clubs in the Spring. She finds that these are both effective ways of getting children excited for exercise. To relax and wind down, her, Jaze and Ike love to draw. The boy’s’ favorite things to draw are imaginative battle scenes of Star Wars, Vikings or even Indians and Cowboys. (Just a suggestion) Overall, Iva believes giving children a creative and energizing outlet not only balances them, but it also teaches them at a young age, the habits and value of healthy living.
Fun, C I V B W O QL 15
STUDENT VOICE, Promoting POSITIVITY IN YOUR COMMUNITY COLUMN BY ANTHONY TORRANCE HIGH SCHOOL INTERN, SCIENCE LEADERSHIP ACADEMY
Making a positive influence on your community (both in school and at home) is something I not only value, but I also think every high school student should work to achieve. A lot of teenagers between the ages of fourteen and eighteen would ask me, “Well how can a kid like me get involved? Don’t you have to be an adult to do something that actually matters?” To this, I disagree. It doesn’t matter what age you are, as long as you have a little ambition and a lot of love! For example, at my school – Science Leadership Academy, or SLA – we value each other as members of one big community, and we respect SLA as a place of learning, a peaceful and productive environment. The students have so much respect for SLA in fact, that they are currently making an inner-school campaign for all students to clean up any trash seen in the school and make sure all recyclables go into the proper bin. The students doing it aren’t members of student government nor are they even seniors. They did this without a teacher asking or suggesting them to do so. That’s an example of becoming involved with your community, even if it is one wrapper at a time. Other members of my school are in BuildOn, a youth focused organization that specializes in the revitalization of city slums. Some are also independently working with other organizations. We even had a school car wash last summer to raise money for the school. The fundraiser was started and facilitated by us! You don’t have to be an adult to start helping your community out. You don’t even have to be in college. It starts as soon as you want it to. I’m only eighteen years old, and I have been the CEO of my own non-profit organization, Phresh Philadelphia, for one-and-a-half years now. I started it with my co-founder Rashaun Williams in October of 2010, and since then, we have done keynote presentations for middle schools, several block clean-up events, networked with dozens of other entrepreneurs and small businesses, and created a new business initiative, called F.L.A.S.H., or Future Leaders Advancing Self Help. All of this has been done by us – and we started it as teenagers! We also have a ‘.com’ as well as a ‘.org.’ On the sites, we give those who are interested the option to join us. We are always looking for new volunteers. Now, creating and establishing your own business won’t be a ‘cake walk.’ It does take what I like to call the three D’s: drive, determination, and dedication. I’m not saying this is for everyone, but don’t think that because your still in school, that it’s unachievable. Become a prophet of your own progress, and you shall prosper!
Community Events and Workshops Events:
World Wellness! 2012 YOGA and Integrative Health Conference Date: Sunday, April 22nd, 2012 Time: 6pm – 8pm Location: UArts ARTS Bank 601 South Broad Street Philadelphia, Pa 19147 Suggested Donation: $20 www.worldyogaproject.org
WYP Women’s Empowerment Weekend Workshop Date: Saturday and Sunday, July 7th & 8th, 2012 Time: 11am – 1pm (both days) Location: 700 North 3rd Street Philadelphia, Pa 19123 Workshop Fee: $75, space is limited!
Charity Art Auction Date: Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012 Time: 7pm – 10pm Location: TBA Our online publication, World Y.O.G.A. Life magazine, offers truly sustainable, GREEN, and affordable advertising! No color surcharge fees! All art work and graphics must be provided as a png, eps, or jpeg file. If you would like to advertise with us please see our specifications and rates below: Advertising Rates on a Per Issue Basis: Business Card (2 x 3.5) One Issue $55, Two Issues $50, Three Issues $40 Quarter Page (3.5 x 4.5) One Issue $115, Two Issues $110, Three Issues $100 Half Page (7 x 4.25 or 3.25 x 9) One Issue $230, Two Issues $220, Three Issues $200 Full Page (7 x 9) One Issue $400, Two Issues $360, Three Issues $325 Events and Workshops Listing Rates: $10 (text only, no graphics) Less than 50 Words $20 (text only, no graphics) 50 – 100 Words Email: firstname.lastname@example.org to place an order for ad space. Place in subject line; ATTN: World Y.O.G.A. Life Advertising
World Wellness! 2012 YOGA and Integrative Health Conference Sunday, April 22nd, 2012, 6pm â€“ 8pm
Location: 601 South Broad Street Philadelphia, Pa 19147 Suggested Donation: $20 To Register Visit: www.worldyogaproject.org