The Namaste Project works to bring yoga and mindfulness to Atlanta children

Students at Beecher Hills Elementary School take part in a yoga class as part of The Namaste Project's programing to bring yoga and mindfulness to Atlanta's youth. Courtesy of The Namaste Project
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Students at Beecher Hills Elementary School take part in a yoga class as part of The Namaste Project's programing to bring yoga and mindfulness to Atlanta's youth. Courtesy of The Namaste Project

“The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on the mind, body and spirit of people all around the world,” said Dr. Kali Arnold, co-founder and director of content development for The Namaste Project, an Atlanta organization that partners with schools and youth organizations to bring meditation, mindfulness and yoga to students and staff.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit last year The Namaste Project was able to make all of its programs available digitally so that it could continue to provide emotional support to the children at its partner schools.

“A mindfulness practice has been shown to help regulate emotions, improve interpersonal relationships, alleviate stress and anxiety and increase focus,” said Danielle Brunson, the co-founder and director of operations at The Namaste Project. “We believe that by providing staff and students a safe space to meditate and/or practice yoga, the school climate will be positively impacted.”

Even before the coronavirus pandemic, The Namaste Project was working in schools to lower behavioral referrals, lower suspension and expulsion rates and increase test scores and student learning using yoga philosophy.

“The benefits gained from practicing mindfulness will have a lasting impact on our students both in and out of the classroom,” said Tiffany Franklin, assistant principal at Beecher Hills Elementary School. “The techniques learned will help them reduce the negative effects of pandemic stress and depression but also improve their ability to stay engaged, avoid behavior problems and increase their understanding of their feelings and emotions.”

Who’s helping?

The Namaste Project

Services: The Namaste Project is an organization that partners with schools and youth organizations to bring meditation, mindfulness and yoga to students and staff.

Where supplies have gone: The Namaste Project works to provide partner schools and organizations’ staff and students with yoga mats and does free community work, such as the training provided to the Latin American Association youth development staff and the free curriculum it provided for the Boy Scouts of America’s Atlanta Chapter.

Where to donate: Email info@thenamasteproject.net to learn how to sponsor a training for a specific youth program or to be connected with a partner program or school to support their needs directly.

How to get involved: Email info@thenamasteproject.net to set up a consultation for your school or organization or to inquire about opportunities to work or volunteer.

If you are involved in or know of an organization working to bring relief to the Atlanta community during the coronavirus pandemic OR you are with an organization with supplies that you don’t know where to donate, please email us at Shannon.n.Dominy@gmail.com.