May 8, 2014
June 2014 Newsletter

Greetings Street Yoga Community


Summer is upon us and there is lots of excitement at Street Yoga!  It is with much inspiration and deep gratitude for our community that I write to you.  I am excited and honored to be transitioning into the Executive Director role at Street Yoga and am thankful for Daniel's service to this organization as he transitions into the role of a Street Yoga Trainer.


I have been the Program Director at Street Yoga for the last 9 months and a Street Yoga volunteer teacher since 2011.  I am thrilled to continue on Street Yoga's journey as we explore collaboration with like-minded organization Living Yoga and continue to offer yoga for youth programs to youth experiencing trauma and lead trainings across the country to teach others how to share the gift of yoga with their communities.


I bring with me a variety of experience working in nonprofit organizations and as a social worker and yoga teacher.  Street Yoga has become a home for me to continue to water my seeds of social justice work, nonprofit administration and healing through yoga, alongside youth in our community. I'm looking forward to continue to grow Street Yoga's reach and services.


Carole Carlton, complementary medicine and ancient spirituality writer, says, "The Summer Solstice is a time for strength and vitality for action and movement."  I want to thank all of you, our supporters, for joining us as we move through this exciting time of opportunity and growth at Street Yoga. 


Please don't hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions as we move through the summer and beyond.  




Hilliary Black

Interim Executive Director





Street Yoga Trainer, Ivy Mer, will be facilitating a special training on Trauma-Informed Yoga at Prasanthi Studio: Family Yoga & Wellness, just outside of New York City this June!


Ivy has worked in the mental health field since 2007 including wilderness therapy, residential treatment and outpatient counseling clinics.  Her experience as a trainer draws from years of working with people from a variety of populations and with various backgrounds and life experiences. 




Street Yoga Founder and Lead Trainer, Mark Lilly, will be facilitating a special training on Trauma-Informed Yoga at High Desert Yoga this June!


Mark is a mindfulness and communication trainer who has taught workshops all over North America to widely diverse audiences. Mark has extensive expertise in community- as well as hospital-based mindfulness practices, and has provided Mindful Communication workshops for physicians, along with similar trainings for counselors, nurses and social workers.







(Schools Uniting Neighborhoods)


Ron Russell Middle School SUN (Schools Uniting Neighborhoods) is a collaborative, year-round, after school program supported by Catholic Charities-El Progama Hispano, David Douglas School District and Multnomah County. In it's 6 year, RRMS SUN is serving over 200 students per year in academic support, skill building and enrichment activities. This year, some of RRMS SUN's partner organization's have been Street Yoga, Write Around Portland, REAP, Catholic Charities-El Programa Hispano, Bricks For Kidz and the Multnomah County Libraries. Community organizations are the key to providing high quality activities for RRMS SUN students. RRMS SUN strives to create a safe and fun environment that allows students to be themselves, experience new opportunities and become life-long learners!


Street Yoga began providing weekly yoga and mindfulness classes to support these middle school youth in April 2014.  We hope to enhance the learning experiencing of the youth by sharing an activity that is not only fun and relaxing at the end of a school day, but a practical tool for lowering stress, self-regulating emotions and increasing focus and attention.  One of Street Yoga's volunteer teachers here says, "their (the students') playfulness and authenticity is contagious!"  We look forward to watching this partnership grow!







THURSDAY, JUNE 19TH, 5:30PM-8:00PM  


Next week, the Street Yoga Volunteer team will be getting together for a special "Mind In A Bottle" making party! Mind Bottles are a tool for youth (and adults) to tap into mindfulness. 


We first learned about Mind Bottles in the documentaryFree The Mind, where educators involved with the Center for Investigating Health Minds, provided these bottles as a choice for youth experiencing challenges to calm their minds, focus their attention, and their rediscover their breath. 


The bottle is filled with glitter and can be shaken as a way of expression how a child is feeling. The glitter represents how busy our mind and body can be with thoughts and physical sensations, such as anxiety and worrisome thoughts.


These bottles will serve as meditation tools at each of the social service agencies that our teachers provide trauma-informed yoga for youth. 







A little while back the Street Yoga team attended the Krishna Das documentary "One True Heart", which told the story of his path through addiction into recovery as a spiritual leader and chant master. Ever since then we have been truly inspired by this amazing musician; he gives back to the community through yoga service in so many ways. 

Krishna Das has recently launched his Kirtan Wallah Tour where he will be visiting Portland, and many other cities in on the West Coast and Southwest United States starting this June 27th - July 15th!  

This is a wonderful time to gather together and join our voices in song for the healing of all others. As Krishna Das says:

"Chanting breaks down the difference between the inside and the outside. It's about having a heart that never shuts down, that nothing can shut down."






We are so thankful to our friends at Santosha Yoga for their monthly support of Street Yoga. Every 1st and 3rd Saturday they offer a donation-based Family Yoga class, with a portion of the proceeds going to benefit Street Yoga!  
On top of their already amazing offerings to our community, they have chosen Street Yoga as their charity for the Cause + Event Marathon coming up in Portland this September! We would love for you to join the Santosha Yoga Team and walk or run with us! The best part; you can still give back by virtually joining the team, even if you can't attend the event. Half of all registration costs will go to support trauma-informed yoga for youth in Street Yoga programs. 




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Street Yoga is a nationally recognized non-profit organization that teaches yoga, mindfulness and compassionate communication to youth and families struggling with homelessness, poverty, abuse, addiction, trauma, and behavioral challenges, so that they can grow stronger, heal from past traumas, and create for themselves lives that are inspired, safe, and joyful. Street Yoga started in Portland, OR in 2002 and now holds weekly classes at over 25 sites. Learn more at