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Mindful : April 2015
Inspired by the story of a girl who died of leukemia, eight-year-old Chelsea Miller raised $2,300 for a foundation that suppor ts children with cancer and also collected 60 fleece blankets for sick children who must stay in the hospital. ● NFL center Jason Brown left his high-paying career in profes- sional football, bought a farm in North Carolina, and star ted an initiative to feed people in need. When the 72-year- old custodian of a Missouri high school was diag- nosed with can- cer, two students raised a year’s salar y for him. Mindful Snacks Ever get the tummy grumbles at work, but you don’t have the time, money, or self-restraint to find some- thing healthier than a bag of chips? Toronto business Mindful Snacks is the latest to enlist in the growing movement to make free, nutritious snacks the standard for workplaces, replacing vending machines with snacks like oatmeal and fresh fruit to create happier, more efficient workplaces. Mindfulsnacks.com Snapping Back to Reality A high school in Brisbane, Australia, teaches its stu- dents mindfulness using photography. Ever y Monday morning, students take out their smartphones, put them on “airplane mode,” and take photos through a mindfulness lens (all phones come with those, right?). Arrested by Meditation Having recently discovered the benefits of meditation himself, a police chief in the western state of Gujarat, India, now offers his officers full pay to take yoga and meditation traning. He believes it’ll improve how police respond to incidents and violence. “The Best Class Ever!” Freshmen at Middlesex independent school, which sits just outside Boston, met weekly for 40 minutes over nine weeks last fall for an Introduction to Mindfulness course. And they loved it. One student called it the “best class ever.” AtfirstIwasabit wiggly and I didn’t really have a straight back. But now I feel nice and relaxed. And I’m mindful. — Four th grader, on meditation in the classroom Free Meditation Benches! Across the bay from San Francisco the Free Medita- tion Bench Project seeks to spread mindfulness by putting handcrafted wooden meditation benches into the wild. For each one sold, another is placed somewhere in the Bay Area—at a bus stop, in a tree, sometimes even online— free for the taking (and, hopefully, using). Going Public In 2014, Wilson High School in Portland, Oregon, became the first public high school to offer a for-credit mindfulness course, provid- ing sitting and walking medita- tion instruction, yoga, and talking groups three days a week. The program was introduced in par tnership with Peace in Schools, an organization that has brought for-credit mindful- ness programs to schools and at- risk teens. peaceinschools.org High schools around the country—and the world—are increasingly recognizing the value of mindfulness and meditation for our pubescent population. Some highlights: GETTING SCHOOLED April 2015 mindful 11 PHOTOGRAPHS:©STORM,©JULIÁNROVAGNATI,©ANDERSPHOTO,©SAILORR,©SUPERJOSEPH,©MALYSHCHYTSVIKTAR,©SRKI66/DOLLARPHOTOCLUB,COURTESYOFFREEMEDITATIONBENCH.COM,COLOURBOX.COM 3Extra ordinary Acts of Kindness