Street Smart Youth Project Inc.
December 2015 Newsletter
Mind, Body and Spirit
Monique Terrell, PSYD
Annually, Street Smart Youth Project holds a youth development retreat which emphasizes exposure opportunities and alternatives to risky behaviors. The 2015 brotherhood/sisterhood retreat carried the theme of Mind Body and Soul/Spirit Connection. Each activity was designed to strengthen/address one of those key areas. Through evidenced based interventions, recreational, cultural and spiritual enrichment, we endeavored to teach; how emotions can be used to help us grow and achieve our goals; that the most fulfilled and successful lives are lived by people who are working to strengthen their minds, bodies and spirits every day; and that over time and with practice, these three parts of self will support a long, happy and healthy life!!
As a society, we tend to minimize the power of the environment when in fact it is one of the most influential factors which impact our lives. Imagine waking up every day in an environment that is not conducive to growth? The chore of having to remind yourself that you do not have to define yourself by your environment becomes a daily struggle for many. For many of our youth and young adults, the opportunity to excel and transcend their immediate environment becomes a testament to their triumph and for others it becomes a seemingly insurmountable burden.
This year, the retreat took place in scenic Lake Lanier where we were ensconced in an environment that enriched the mind, body and spirit of those in attendance. Just that change of scenery alone was an intervention, sighs of relief and release, relaxed postures and bigger smiles were the evidence. Over the course of four days, we laughed, played and learned. There were cook- off challenges, mentoring groups, individual assessments of needs, healthy relationship games, nutrition classes, bon- fires, field day games and evidence- based interventions (Botvin Life Skills).
The response from our youth and young adults was overwhelmingly positive and we are grateful to be able to provide these type of interventions each year. We look forward to next year’s journey!!
Please click here to see picture highlights from this year’s retreat!