Yoga Gangsters empowers youth by addressing the symptoms of trauma and poverty such as limited education, addiction, violence, incarceration, teen pregnancy, HIV, and more through the practice of yoga.
As we continue to flow with this amazing movement, we thought it would be great to share some insight and other perspectives from numerous people who have spent time with Yoga Gangsters…this week…our incredible and AMAZING intern Gabrielle C. — We wish you much abundance of success on your journey and look forward to sharing the mat with you on September 22!!!! #ygchallenge #myservice
Ever since the first day I started my journey with Yoga Gangsters, there was nothing but excitement and eagerness running through me. I have been thrown into the life of a yogi since I was little. My mom a yoga teacher and nurse used yoga to help her struggling patients. I got to witness everyday how yoga can help someone get his or her strength back not only physically but also mentally. When my mom passed away I knew that I want to continue my moms work in any way I can. I have always been the shy and soft-spoken person so I knew being a yoga teacher and up front in the action was not really for me but then I came across Yoga Gangsters and I was sucked in. When, I was presented with the opportunity to work with Yoga Gangsters this summer, I couldn’t wait to get started. As I started my journey, I was lucky to be working closely with Jodi. I will never forget the first time I met Jodi and I said to her I am excited to be reporting to you this summer and she corrected me and said you are not reporting to me, I am guiding you on this journey. That one moment of kindness and support from someone I just met really made me feel like Yoga Gangsters is where I needed to be.
My journey with Yoga Gangsters started off doing a lot of behind the scenes work, which I enjoyed a lot but then I was thrown right into assisting with my fellow Yoga Gangsters volunteers. My first day of working with Girl Power Rocks was one of the scariest moments because I didn’t know what to expect. But right when I stepped in the kid’s smiles and laughter throughout the class touched my heart. I was there to just observe but the excitement sucked me in. The kids were just as timid as me the first time we were there but when we came back every week they started to enjoy the power of yoga. They became focused and wanted to try the hard moves and came back with researched moves they wanted to practice. It brought me peace when I would help them get into that headstand or just watch the girl be relaxed and find peace within themselves. There was one little girl that touched my heart; she always asked me if I was going to be back next week so I can be her partner. The moment I walked through the door week after week and saw her smile was really something. She smiled because I promised I would be back and didn’t break that promise. It will be sad not spending every Thursday with the girls of Girl Power Rocks but I have a feeling this wont be the last time I witness the positive effects of yoga.
This summer has brought me so much joy and excitement. It was one of the best journeys I have taken. I would like to believe that my journey with Yoga Gangsters has just started and I will continue to be inspired on and off the mat. Thank you Terri, Claire, Natalya, and Jodi for getting my journey started.
We are so grateful for the Yogiiza peeps and the yoga community for thinking of us. Please support this awesome event and stop by the table to say hi!
4:00pm – Karma Beach Clean-up
5:30pm – Community Yoga Flow
Eugene Gant – Naam Yoga Pranayama
Rina Jakubowicz – Vinyasa Yoga
Alessandrina Lerner – Guided Sunset Meditation
Andrew Clark – Crystal Sound Bowls
Ashtanga – AcroYoga – Skanda Demonstrations By:
Daylene Christensen – Megan Johnson – Rob Newmans
Gabriel Axel – Ewa Josefsson – Barbara Bennet
7:00pm – Party Continues…
Local Organic Food & Beverage – Juice Bar – Slack Line – AcroYoga
Bag Monster by Surfrider – Surf Videos – Synergy Karmic Conversations
Mindful Raffle – Hug & Heal Corner – Posture Analysis – 1111 Vibes
YOGiiZA Photo Contest for Full Page Ad in Origin Magazine
Live Music by Local Musicians Fabian Hernadez & Adrian Gonzalez
This Saturday, round up your friends and family and join Yoga Gangsters at PhilanthroFest 2013, a FREE family friendly festival that features art, music and dance entertainment, a kid’s zone, a community stage, and more! The festival is intended to create an environment that promotes civic engagement and deepens community connections while connecting potential volunteers and donors to not-for-profit organizations. The fun will take place this Saturday, April 6th from 12p-6:30p at Miami Dade College - Wolfson Campus located at 300 Northeast 2nd Avenue Miami, FL 33132. RSVP at www.philanthrofest.eventbrite.com
Next Wednesday night March 20th, celebrate WMC (that’s Winter Music Conference for the yogi folks) at Buck 15‘s benefit party for Yoga Gangsters! The casual lounge is located at 437 Lincoln Road Miami Beach and admission is FREE (yes, that means NO COVER). Proceeds from all sales of the super affordable drinks will go towards Yoga Gangster’s non-profit programming helping us to continue bringing more free yoga programs to inner city youth. (Now that’s a good excuse to party during the week) The Deep House sounds will be provided by Mr. Wolfe, DJ Stell*R (also an official YG teacher!) and Mr. RX. The party’s from 9 p.m.- 5 a.m. so even the early risers have no excuses See you there and if you spot a YG shirt, come say HI!
These days the medical community is becoming much more aware of how yoga can affect both health and well-being. Yoga is truly one of the best preventative medicines gaining popularity, so we were thrilled when asked to educate the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine’s staff and students at their community health fair last week. Programming Manager, Natalya Krayeva and volunteer Linda Gonzalez had the opportunity to answer questions from the community and share about our upcoming training offerings for those seeking to learn more about yoga and trauma.
When we were invited by City Year Miami to share yoga with middle school students on a Saturday morning, we knew that we would be meeting some pretty exceptional kids. We had such a blast participating in the Young Heroes “Health & Fitness Day” where we taught how yoga is a great way to workout your body, mind and spirit. The youth here were eager to learn and many even remembered some poses from our participation in last year’s event. Check out the photos below and click here to see the entire photo album on Facebook. Class led by Marisol Tamez, Paola Pinto & Sarah Clegg.
Can you believe we’ve already trained over 250 people wanting to give back to their community? YES, the energy of service is getting more intense and powerful every day! Meet the latest graduating class of YG trainees who completed our Yoga Gangsters Outreach Training in Miami at 305 Yoga this past weekend. The next stops on our US Tour are Hegel Yoga in Phoenix, AZ (March 1-3) and Philadelphia, PA (April 12-14)!
Talk about a MOVEMENT! Yesterday a special member of the YG family, Candy McDowall, created a blog post to tell us about her outreach program at Huckleberry House a crisis and runaway center for teens in Columbus, OH. She asked her friends and family to contribute donations and in less than 24 hours she’s already raised over $870.00! We are full of gratitude for our community of supporters! Click the graphic below to be redirected to Candy’s blog “Bird Uncaged” to read her full article!
This past weekend, we took over Las Vegas and welcomed a brand crew to the Yoga Gangsters family! Big Love to Angelica Govaert, owner of Sin City Yoga for hosting us and building community! Next stop on our Outreach Training U.S. Tour is our hometown of Miami, Florida this February 22-24 at 305 Yoga. Sign up HERE.