Brooklyn Sit-a-thon on April 21

Northeast USA  

April 21, 2013

Join us for the Brooklyn Sit-a-thon, a borough-wide event where we join together on April 21 to spend a day in sitting meditation as a way to raise funds for the Awake Youth Project – a program coordinated by Brooklyn Zen Center, in partnership with Brooklyn College Community Partnership, to bring mindfulness and meditation programs to Brooklyn youth.

The Awake Youth Project supports weekly teen meditation and mindfulness groups in three Brooklyn high schools and at Brooklyn Zen Center. Our peer-to-peer model trains participants to eventually lead their own teen meditation groups so that they are able to carry mindfulness practice to their fellow students.

Many of the young people with whom we work live with considerable economic hardship and risk for violence. They struggle with enormous stress, anxiety, anger, and other strong emotions that make an already demanding life schedule all the more difficult. Consequently, these high-school-based groups employ meditation and mindfulness practices to address the many challenges in the lives of our youth.

Now in our third year, requests for replication and adaptation of these groups are emerging. We will not only be expanding to at least one more high school next September; the program has been so successful that one of our current schools has asked that the Awake Youth Project design a 12-week course on meditation for students who would otherwise be on track toward suspension. In addition, some of the Awake Youth teens have been asked by their teachers to lead classes in meditation, spreading the practice of meditation in their schools.

Of course, the volunteer efforts that have been the backbone of this endeavor now require funding for stabilization so that we can continue with our programs at Erasmus, Bushwick, and Thomas Jefferson high schools, while expanding to other schools.

For this reason, we launched the annual Brooklyn Sit-a-thon! This year we are hoping to raise $40,000 from participants willing to ask their family, friends, and communities to sponsor them in a day of sitting meditation.

It does not matter at all where you are. You can either sit with us in Brooklyn on April 21 or sit at home! Just go to our FirstGiving profile and set up your own personal profile to begin raising funds for teens in Brooklyn.

To join this effort to bring mindfulness and meditation practice to our community’s youth, please read here about setting up a First Giving profile, where you will find everything you need to get started. For details on the day itself, read here. For support with raising gifts, you can download our fundraising guide by clicking here. Thank you for the generous support of your time! See you on April 21!