A Message from the President – Welcome to the YSC Blog

 In Yoga Service Conference

Welcome to our new Yoga Service Blog. We are looking forward to sharing thoughts and perspectives on topics near and dear to the hearts and minds of Yoga Service Council members from a wide variety of trusted teachers, researchers and authors.

RobSchware_180x235The Yoga Service Council (YSC) was formed in 2009 at the Omega Institute by a small group of organizations bringing yoga to underserved and vulnerable populations. As we worked to support each other, exchange ideas, and envision the future, a collaboration was sparked that has made all of our efforts stronger and more intentional. Each year the membership of the YSC grows, and our capacity to serve grows with it. We meet every May through the generosity of Omega to exchange best practices, discuss how to expand access, and to infuse our programs with renewed energy and inspiration.

This year I’m particularly excited to announce a new series of White Books, in collaboration with the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, establishing best practices in the field of Yoga Service. The first White Book, addressing yoga in schools, is currently being edited and peer reviewed and we are looking forward to publishing it this May. The second in the series will address yoga for veterans.

The intention of each of the White Books is to create a resource to support the sharing of yoga in communities so that the practice is:

  • safe, effective, and positioned in a broader social context
  • in touch with the relevant research
  • respectful of the many intersecting realities found in any social setting, including the need for skillful relationship building within institutions

We are tremendously excited for the opportunities that this series of annual White Books holds for making progress on our shared goal of helping to mainstream the practices of yoga and mindfulness in school systems, VA facilities, prisons, and other social institutions.

YSC membership continues to grow, with more individual and organizational members joining us weekly. Our challenge is to provide real value to each and every member, and one of the ways we do this is through the annual Yoga Service Conference. Our 4th annual Yoga Service Conference will be held May 14-17, 2015 at Omega. This year we are offering tiered pricing to all conference participants, in an effort to make the conference as accessible as possible. Join us to gain a renewed sense of purpose, expanded networking opportunities, and the heartfelt inspiration you need to make a difference in the world.

I would like to acknowledge our Board, who continues to work on our annual conference, membership, and website: Jennifer Cohen Harper, Heather Ciocola, Bob Altman, and Mark Lilly, as well as our Advisors.

Yours in service,

Rob Schware

President, Yoga Service Council

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