AYP National Affiliate Pilot 2019 Cohort

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The Art of Yoga Project’s National Affiliate Pilot cohort is comprised of eight organizations from seven states across the United States including Illinois, Michigan, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, New York, Mississippi and Texas.  These community-based organizations serve marginalized girls in diverse contexts within juvenile detention centers, group homes, behavioral health treatment centers and in the community. 

The spring delegates from these organizations attended The Art of Yoga Project’s training: Using Yoga and Art to Support and Empower Marginalized Teen Girls.  They returned home equipped with an in-depth understanding of The Art of Yoga Project’s trauma-informed and gender-responsive model, along with their yoga and creative arts curricula.  Each organization will integrate The Art of Yoga Project’s Wise Inside Essentials curriculum into existing programs and/or partnerships serving marginalized girls.

Nollie Jenkins Family Center, Lexington, MS

Phoenix Savage, Yoga Instructor and Teaching Artist

Ellen Reddy, Executive Director

Nollie Jenkins Family Center (NJFC) is a community-based organization that offers parent education, environmental education, literacy development, civic engagement and support for families of adjudicated youth.  With this grant, NJFC will introduce trauma-informed yoga and creative expression to girls with a trauma history who are already involved with the organization. 

Cunningham Children’s Home, Urbana, IL

Susan Bane, Yoga Instructor

Jillian Schultz, Special Therapies Specialist

Cunningham Children’s Home serves youth and families across nine counties in Illinois through residential treatment centers, therapeutic day schools, vocational services, counseling, and independent living programs. With this grant, Cunningham Children’s Home will bring trauma-informed yoga and creative expression to girls housed in the organization’s group home and students at their therapeutic day school.

Youth Arts: Unlocked, Swartz Creek, MI

Marcia Faye McGee, Yoga Instructor

Jessica Hammon, Legal Advocate and Yoga Instructor

Youth Arts: Unlocked brings poetry and creative expression workshops to incarcerated girls to promote confidence, creative skills and positive identity development.  Through this grant, Youth Arts: Unlocked will integrate trauma-informed yoga and creative expression into their existing weekly creative expression programs with girls in detention. 

Crittenton Services, Inc., Wheeling, WV

Lindsay Schooler, Yoga Instructor

Kathy Szafran, CEO of Crittenton Services, Inc. WV

Crittenton Services, Inc. of WV offers behavioral health services for girls with complex trauma histories in 22 West Virginia counties.  They have residential programs and also serve pregnant and parenting girls. They currently offer weekly yoga to girls involved with their organization and will use this grant to adopt a more trauma-informed approach to their yoga classes.

Rising Ground, Brooklyn, NY

Michele Favale, Therapist and Yoga Instructor

Devon Stewart, Yoga Instructor

Rising Ground supports vulnerable families from high-poverty areas in and around the New York City area.  They also support adjudicated youth with behavioral health and community placement.  With this grant, Rising Ground will integrate trauma-informed and gender-responsive yoga and creative expression into their current program working with girls in a long-term therapeutic detention program.  

YWCA Tri County Area, Pottstown, PA

Kelly Grosser, Youth Program Manager

Kristie Piacine, Youth Program Coordinator

YWCA Tri County Area serves families and youth through education and youth leadership development.  Their Healthy Pathways Project is a program designed for girls with a trauma history who are struggling in school, as a diversion from juvenile detention.  They will be integrating AYP’s trauma-informed yoga and creative arts curriculum into their existing yoga programming.

Human Kind Wellness, Dallas, TX

Kathy Crane, Owner, Counselor, Yoga Instructor

Human Kind Wellness offers a prevention program in partnership with Rockwall County Juvenile Services office for adjudicated teen girls including counseling services and yoga.  Human Kind Wellness will be integrating AYP’s trauma-informed yoga and creative expression program into their existing yoga program for girls.

Buffalo Dance Center, Elma, NY

Stacey Wawrzyniec, Director, Yoga Instructor

Buffalo Dance Center teaches life skills to youth such as creativity, confidence, focus, accountability and perseverance through the avenue of movement.  They will be bringing yoga and creative expression to marginalized girls at two partner agencies in Western New York.