Offerings to invoke a sense of unity and sustainability through a Yogic self-leadership lens.
The true aspect of Yoga is to discover that aspect of one’s being that can never be lost."
Powerful and dynamic life transforming experiences to ignite the light living in one’s soul. Inherently, these experiences assist in recognizing one’s capacity to transcend toward who they are born to be steadily, brightly and sustainably. Ultimately leading each individual to become an agent of personal and/or societal cultural change.
Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word yuj, meaning to yoke or unite. The traditional practices of Yoga are akin in their mission to the more modern leadership style known as self-leadership. The Yoke marries these two powerful concepts into profound programs changing the lives of everyone who embarks on this journey of self exploration at its deepest level.
The Merging of Missions
Two important missions are now one.
Just over ten years ago a woman named Kenadie brought her heart’s passion to life by creating an organization named HerShe. (You can hear the whole story on The Yoke’s Vimeo Page. The organization’s mission was dedicated to empowering girls in foster care to successfully transition into thriving women through the performing arts, mentorship, college-readiness and exposure to extraordinary experiences. Kenadie quickly identified the need to provide the girls with a sustainable approach to addressing the developmental stages of mental and emotional wellness, in order to beat the dismal national statistics for these young women post-emancipation.
Shortly after setting the intention Kenadie met a group of professional Co-Active coaches, one of which being LauraLynn. The coaches group, which came to be known as the Catalyst Ladies (CL) had just spent two years formulating a leadership program for youth. This creation was prompted by their own experience of having just gone through a year long leadership program with the Coaches Training Institute. The program met Kenadie’s desire for the youth to distinguish who they are, develop the capacity to build sustainable/healthy relationships, and discover how to be productive within a culture.
The HerShe program is a national recognized organization with numerous awards. Over the last decade Kenadie and LauraLynn have remained committed to the vision of providing foster girls with a dynamic life-affirming experience to assist their lives as they go through high school and head toward adulthood. The referrals by social workers and other folks working with foster youth continues to this day. Often the demand is beyond the resources available. And though the programming and support structure are consistently beating all of the national statistics for foster youth we continue to consider the relevance and impact of each component.
Together, Kenadie and LauraLynn are BEATING THE ODDS. Nationally, 1 in 10 foster youth will go to college, while only 1 in 100 will graduate from college. The rates of teen pregnancy, incarceration, and other actions associated with a high potential poverty cycle are amongst the highest nationally for this teenage population. The youth attending the programming (now known as Camp FireFly) are beating these odds. 27% of the 130 foster youth having gone through the programming go on to complete some type of higher education degree post emancipation, pregnancy rates are lower, and incarceration rates are nearly void. Hear Kenadie tell the full story in her own words.
THIS YEAR LauraLynn, who took on the role of heading up all programming aspects some years ago, approached Kenadie with an idea. What if we take what has been built in HerShe and add the wisdom depth of all Yoga is (The Yoke’s mission) to enhance this offering to another level? The more they explored this possibility they also discovered how the approach of the current programming is comparable to what is known as self leadership. LauraLynn then applied to a PhD program, Leadership and Change with the proposal to develop a self leadership model with a Yogic lens. Additionally, a collective decision has been made to extend these impactful programs to women, providing scholarship positions in all offerings.
This innovative partnership is one of mutual inspiration. Their deepest shared wish is to provide more moments in time for any female to feel the light she holds and manifest the ability to sustain it throughout her life, so she can be the change she wishes to see in the world.