Updated: Nov 23, 2017
This year, we planted a seed of hope in Boston’s fertile ground. It was our hope that introducing yoga to Boston’s communities of color could begin to relieve the stress and heal the sickness that threatens our physical, mental, emotional and community health. Creating connections with local groups & organizations to establish our presence & practice in spaces throughout our urban neighborhoods, we began to settle into the soil, preparing for an upcoming season of growth and transformation.
Our seed began to sprout this spring when we hosted Yoga 101, our first free yoga class series, at Bromley-Heath Housing in Jamaica Plain. By May, we had launched our second series, Relax & Renew, in partnership with the Madison Park Development Corporation, & began leading a weekly class for seniors in collaboration with ABCD's Jamaica Plain APAC. We also enjoyed practicing yoga with the teens at the Science Club for Girls's retreat at Pine Manor College in Newton, MA — hear their thoughts about the session and how they plan to incorporate yoga into their lives here.
This summer, we tapped into the healing energy of Mother Earth with a series of free outdoor yoga classes. Thanks to our continued partnership with Madison CDC, we grew our souls among the beautiful beds of fresh produce at the Orchard Community Garden in Roxbury, and created calm in the midst of the chaos of the city at the Sustainability Guild/Dorchester Community Food Co-op's Bowdoin-Geneva Community Hub, a family-friendly urban oasis in Dorchester.
We also introduced yoga to youth participating in the Sportsmen's Tennis Club's summer camp program, and shared yogic relaxation techniques with families during Smart From the Start's Address the Stress Week at Houghton's Pond.
We moved our practice indoors for the fall, heading back to Roxbury for the return of our Relax & Renew class series, and began sharing yoga with students & staff at CollegeBound Dorchester, an alternative middle school in Dorchester.
In October, we were one of more than a dozen organizations & businesses that participated in Roxbury Rising Against Diabetes, a month-long initiative to educate residents about how to use healthy food & fitness practices to prevent & manage diabetes. And in December, we piloted a support group program with Smart from the Start families using yoga & talk therapy to educate adult caregivers on developing positive coping skills for the stress they experience.
As winter settles in, we will be reflecting on & showing our appreciation for the growing community of individuals, youth & families who are using yoga to transform our lives, & deepening our roots & relationships to someday soon see our seed of hope for healing blossom into abundant community health.