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Holistic Life Foundation to Host 14-Day Self-Care Challenge on Instagram Live

May 11, 2020

By: South Florida Caribbean News

Nonprofit Brings Virtual Mindfulness Practice to Families Who #stayathome with Breathe Overtown Campaign


MIAMIHolistic Life Foundation (HLF), a nonprofit empowering underserved communities through yoga, mindfulness and self-care practice, along with partners Catalyst Miami and Overtown Children and Youth Coalition (OCYC) is bringing a virtual 14-Day Self-Care Challenge to Overtown families – and beyond – with its Breathe Overtown campaign.

Beginning May 11th and concluding May 28th, Holistic Life Foundation senior staff will lead a 10-minute mindfulness practice via Instagram @HolisticLifeFoundation daily at 10 am.

This “10 @ 10” live daily practice is to encourage and support Overtown-based children and their families to “take a break and breathe” during this often-overwhelming time at home.

Although this partnership began in Overtown, the organizations hope families nationwide will participate in the community mindfulness initiative.

“We are excited to introduce this 14-Day Self-Care Challenge to Overtown with Holistic Life Foundation,” said Graylyn Swilley Woods, Ph.D, executive director of the Overtown Children and Youth Coalition. “The Overtown Children and Youth Coalition welcomed the opportunity to collaborate with the Holistic Life Foundation, nationally recognized for delivering transformative services for at-risk youth.  We want to ensure that our residents have skills to cope during the pandemic and beyond.  The innovative programming with the Holistic Life Foundation will help strengthen the resiliency and Social-Emotional Learning skills of all families in Overtown.”  

“The global pandemic has altered nearly everything about the way we live,” said Holistic Life Foundation co-founder Ali Smith. “Adjusting to this new reality is hard for everyone, with a lot of stress on working parents and young people in particular. Much like our hometown of Baltimore, Overtown is a place with a rich history and a vibrant community, but one with significant obstacles for its residents. We created the Breathe Overtown campaign after a recent Overtown community meeting where local community leaders expressed concern over the impact of such heightened levels of stress. The goal is to alleviate anxiety and focus on self-care to help navigate their feelings through this confusing and difficult time. We also love the idea of making this a family activity for families who are learning how to navigate new routines with children of all ages.”

The Baltimore-based nonprofit recently expanded into South Florida and until school shutdowns due to COVID19, HLF was serving 10,000 youth each week through its partnerships in the Baltimore City Public School system. HLF has been able to pivot its organizational approach to still meet the HLF mission of empowering underserved communities in both locations.

“Catalyst Miami is thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate with both the Overtown Children and Youth Coalition and the Holistic Life Foundation,” said Gretchen Beesing, CEO of Catalyst Miami. “Synergies exist between the three organizations where we may leverage each other’s strengths to provide innovative programming, working together to strengthen the resiliency and an overall culture of health of all families in Overtown.”

“We are excited that our local partners in the Overtown community helped design this innovative program and are the ones on the ground who can allow us to reach more people,” added Phoebe Haupt, Regional Director of the HLF South Florida Initiative. “Both Catalyst Miami and the Overtown Children and Youth Coalition are well-respected organizations in the community known for their grassroots presence and knowledge of the community.”

To participate in daily instruction from anywhere in the world, follow @HolisticLifeFoundation on Instagram and view stories beginning at 10am 5/11. 

Live video instruction will be available for replay until 10a the following day.

This article originally appeared on South Florida Caribbean News


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