Bringing Mindfulness &
Movement to Our Urban Youth

Verge Inspire is an initiative of Verge Yoga created to introduce mindfulness-based yoga practices to school-aged children in underserved communities in urban Philadelphia. Research has shown that mindfulness practices can significantly increase the capacity of children to learn and can offer children an effective set of tools to manage the stress and distractions in their lives.

Verge Yoga has been “inspired” by the results of the work of Cheryl Nichols in Philadelphia schools and the work in Baltimore schools of the Holistic Life Foundation (HLF). The success of HLF after ten years working in Baltimore schools has been well researched by Johns Hopkins University and Penn State University. Their research has confirmed that when young people are equipped with tools like mindfulness-based yoga, they are able to better manage stress in their lives and in turn, they experience significant improvements in their well-being, relations with others, and success in school and life. For more about Cheryl and HLF, please visit
How can you help?
Our Verge Inspire Campaign is on! Verge Inspire is our new non-profit program Bringing Mindfulness Through Movement to our Urban Youth. In September, we will offer the Verge Experience to kids in urban Philadelphia schools through a specially designed in-school mindfulness-based yoga program.

We need to raise $25,000 to support twenty in-school programs for the 2014-2015 school year. We have the trained teachers ready, we have schools and kids eager to start, now we need you.

There are 4 ways you can help:

  • Sponsor! Our Verge Inspire teachers through our Indiegogo crowd sourcing campaign. Visit our Indiegogo site, watch our video and make a contribution.

  • Share our Indiegogo campaign! Indiegogo makes it easy to share through Facebook, Twitter, Email.

  • Share your ideas! We would love to hear from you on how to make Verge Inspire a sustainable success.

  • Celebrate! We want to share our Verge Experience of Mindfulness through Movement with children that can really benefit learning to breathe deeply.
Thank you in advance for supporting Verge Inspire and for sharing it with your friends and family.


Phase 1 - Building a Strong Foundation
Verge Inspire is our initiative to expand the work started by Cheryl Nichols in Philadelphia and to build on the success of programs like HLF. In order to be successful, we need a build a strong foundation for a Philadelphia based program and HLF’s work in Baltimore has provided an effective model.

We see that a strong foundation for a Philadelphia based program will take a few basic elements:

1. Establish a committed community of certified Yoga and Meditation Instructors in the Philadelphia area trained to work with underserved young people in a school setting.
2. Create a consistent “Mindfulness Though Movement” program designed specially for school-age young people.
3. Build partnerships with Schools Administrators and Educators.
4. Raise adequate funds to pay instructors in the initial phase(s) of the Mindfulness Through Movement program until such time that schools are able to offer mindfulness programs directly.

Phase 1 - Milestones
Verge Inspire was created to do the initial work of building the foundation for a sustainable mindfulness-based yoga program in urban Philadelphia schools.

The key milestones to date are:

1. Formed Mindfulness Through Movement, Inc. a Pennsylvania non-profit corporation that has filed for 501(c)3 status.
2. Developed a mindfulness-based yoga program in collaboration with HLF, Cheryl Nichols and Verge Yoga.
3. Completed an initial teacher training with 20 certified 200-hour yoga teachers.
4. Identified up to 20 schools for the 2014-2015 school year to run a first full-year pilot program of Mindfulness Through Movement.
5. Raising at least $25,000 to fully fund up to 15 programs for the initial 2014-2015 school year.

Mindfulness Through Movement
Verge Inspire was created to “kickstart” Mindfulness Through Movement. It has been our intention from that outset that Mindfulness Through Movement should be an open invitation to all certified yoga and meditation instructors in the Philadelphia region to participate in its growth and success and that Mindfulness Through Movement would be “owned” by our Philadelphia area yoga and meditation communities.

Our initial funding raising efforts are designed to establish up to 15 one-year programs for the 2014-2015 school year. Each program will include weekly classes for the students and quarterly training for instructors. The next Mindfulness Through Movement teacher training will be held in January 2015. The MTM teacher training is a 10-hour training mindfulness-based yoga program specially designed for school aged children in underserved communities. Please check back for dates and times of the next MTM training.

The cost of the teacher training is $150 (100% of Proceeds of MTM Teacher Training support the MTM program). The MTM will be held at Verge Yoga Center, 250 W Lancaster Ave, Wayne, PA 19087. Space will be limited.

For more information, please contact

* Prevention researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Pennsylvania State University and practitioners from the Holistic Life Foundation developed and evaluated a mindfulness-based intervention for youth. Most of the participating youth were African American and lived in low-income neighborhoods with high levels of violence. They determined that youth in under-served, urban communities are at risk for a range of negative outcomes related to stress, including social-emotional difficulties, behavior problems, and poor academic performance. Mindfulness-based approaches may improve adjustment among chronically stressed and disadvantaged youth by enhancing self- regulatory capacities.