The Never Ending Journey of Mindfulness – Fundraiser to support youth in search of mindfulness
Donations will cover the costs of travel to: Insight Meditation Society (Barre, MA) 6/30-7/4, Virginia iBMe 7/5-7/10, Northeast iBMe 7/24-7/29, Spirit Rock Young Adult Retreat (CA) 8/8-8/14
This summer I have been chosen out of three peer leaders from Awake Youth Project, to attend four meditation retreats as a test to see how it can benefit future peer leaders. I will attend two retreats in New England, one in Virginia and one in California.
I have attended three iBme retreats in New England and will travel to three new centers this summer. Your donations will help cover the costs of travel and fees to make this all possible.
The retreats I have already attended were truly eye opening and they have impacted me to become the person I am today. Retreat space can have that impact because it contains young people from different races, backgrounds, and locations, coming together to create this unique, beautiful, and safe space where we learn to find the beauty in ourselves and learn to appreciate ourselves and others through meditation.
I intend to help myself and my community grow with what a learn on retreat, and introduce the community to new ways of living. I hope to be able to impact that brother on the street corner with the cold steel on his waist that he calls his best friend, or the the sister who graduates at 17 years old seeking for love where it cannot be found, and the brother who feels like he has no choice, also the brothers and sisters who are trapped in the dark cold closet because they are afraid of being different.
I will cover my transportation expenses while traveling.
why we’re doing it
The current Peer Leadership Trainees (PLT) are myself (Richardson), Amani, and Cohen. The peer leaders this year have accomplished so much from designing, planning, and leading off-site workshops to supporting a 2-day mindfulness retreat for youth at Brooklyn Zen Center (www.brooklynzen.org). We had the pleasure of planning workshops for beautiful and eye opening causes, for example L.G.B.T.Q. summits and Urban yogis (www.urbanyogis.org), youth of color learning to teach yoga. We also hosted the first ever weekend long meditation retreat for youth at Brooklyn Zen Center, entitled Free To Be Me, with the help of our teachers. As peer leaders our responsibilities at the Free To Be Me retreat was to plan food schedules, transportation for out of state retreatants, and to raise money to support the retreat and scholarships for the retreat. As PLT’s we are trained to teach the arts of meditation from posture, to breathing, to focusing on the main points of the body while meditating, to anchor a way to bring yourself back when distracted. We are also learning to offer and facilitate meditation sits for groups, for example love and kindness sits, body scans, and being with the breath. As a peer leader trainee I have had a life changing experience and I only hope to share my experience with my community and maybe the world so I can make an impact.