May Newsletter

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Dear Friends,

I spent Spring break on the beach in Tel Aviv soaking up the sun and spending time with close friends and family. Being in nature reminds me to breathe deeper, walk slower and truly appreciate things that often are all too easy to take for granted. Mid-trip I bent down to zip-up a suitcase and pulled a muscle. Nothing like six weeks in rehabilitation to appreciate the gifts of health! Now after the recovery, I am definitely not taking the joy of movement and health for granted. Every morning when I go to the gym for my swim, I want to kiss the lifeguard out of happiness of being able to enjoy this precious time in the pool.

Wishing you the gift of heightened gratitude and abundant health and joy this Spring.

Much love,
Lisa


Volunteers for Good

We love our New York Life Volunteers! Every month they roll up their sleeves and create beautiful gifts for children in hospitals and bereavement centers. Our latest projects included SoaringDreamBoxes (pictured above), SoaringOrigami and a gorgeous SoaringMural (pictured above). We can’t wait for our next project: SoaringWindChimes on June 12. Thank you to our magnificent leaders: Nina Deal, Arnyse Black, Victoria Dwyer, Maria Kamenetskaya, Celena Thorne and Yuk-Ying Chin MORE PHOTOS


Viacommunity Day


In the heart of Chinatown in New York City, 50 of the most exuberant Viacom employees spent the day with 4th graders at P.S.126. Students and employees decorated SoaringQuilts® and SoaringPillows® with inspirational messages and artwork for hospitalized children. Then everyone enjoyed a high-energy Zumba® Fitness dance experience to celebrate health, led by instructor Thomas Estler. The day ended with a Closing Award Ceremony. Soaringwords is proud to be part of the annual Viacommunity Day and we can’t wait for next year’s event! MORE PHOTOS


Take Your Child to Work Day


On Take Your Child to Work Day millions of children cut school to hang out at their parents’ offices. We shared Soaringwords community service projects with employees’ children at BlackRock, Cisco and Horizon Media. Since hospitalized children can’t participate in the fun, we decided to bring it to them by donating SoaringQuilts® and SoaringPillows® decorated with inspirational messages and artwork. (Photo left: BlackRock. Photo right: Horizon Media employees delivering Quilts and Pillows to children at Beth Israel Medical Center in NYC).


Soaringwords + Zumba Fitness



Every month, Zumba® Instructors in more than 50 hospitals and Ronald McDonald Houses bring Soaringwords’ activities and Zumba® classes to children, their families and hospital professionals. Soaringwords salutes all the hardworking and dedicated Instructors who donate their time to inspire others!

(Photo left: Children’s National Health Service in Washington, DC. Photo right: Ronald McDonald House at St. Christopher’s Hospital, Philadelphia.)

Thank you to Dahrio Wonder for writing a wonderful new song called Get Up that he is dedicating to Soaringwords! Now all our fabulous Soaringwords + Zumba® volunteers can share this amazing song and choreography with ill children around the world. Thanks to Anaya and Maliah for being the stars of the video and to their mom ZES™ Gina Grant and ZES™ Jessica Witt for creating the fabulous choreography. VIDEO


Soaringwords is Coming to Orlando!



Join us at the Zumba® Master Class featuring world-renowned instructors ZES™ Marcie Benavides and DJ Francis. Special Guest ZJ™ Holly Rose. 

100% of your ticket will fund the Soaringwords + Zumba® Fitness program for hospitalized children. With your support, we will share the healing power of dance, movement and laughter. 

Saturday, June 27 – Doors open 6:30 PM
7-8 PM Make a SoaringSuperhero puppet for hospitalized children
8-9:30 PM Zumba® Master Class

Disney Coronado Springs Resort – 1000 W. Buena Vista Drive, Orlando

$20 GENERAL ADMISSION; $30 VIP (includes T-shirt and priority entrance) TICKETS: http://marciefrancis.bpt.me

Special Guests Include: International Presenter Fabio Barros, Mother/Daughter Team Reyna Zurita and ZJ™ Janice Gonzalez, the youngest ZIN™ member in U.S. Justin Romero and the fabulous Lourdes Leon, ZJ™


SoaringStars – Marcia Graham

This month we salute Marcia Graham, CCLS, Senior Child Life Specialist at Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center in NYC.  For the past ten years, Marcia has been our SoaringChampion welcoming volunteer delegations to visit with patients and families and share SoaringQuilts & SoaringPillows and other crafts projects to brighten their days. She is a tireless advocate for patients with an understated warmth and calm she learned back home in Jamaica. Marcia is a person who makes each child feel loved and supported; precisely what you’d want from someone bringing hope and healing to so many patients and families who come to the hospital from all around the world.


SoaringHealth & Wellness

 
Awe and Wonder in the Midst of Medical Challenges
Jonathan Haidt is a positive psychologist who is considered an expert on Awe and Wonder. Like so many words today that are bandied about in daily use so that the original impact is seriously diminished, the actual definition of awe means that one has to experience something that does not neatly fit into our existing mental structures. The vastness or awe-inspiring experience causes us to pause, giving us an opportunity for our minds to actually expand and grow. According to Haidt, “the best way to think about awe and wonder is as a family of emotions, but the key thing to keep in mind is that awe always includes an element of fear and dread in the face of gigantic awesome power. When you’re contemplating and processing the experience, that’s when your mind shifts and expands. And that is what I think is so deeply pleasurable.”  A self-described awe-junkie, he traveled the world researching awesome experiences like climbing the highest mountains and going to remote and exotic locales. So how can someone experience moments of awe and wonder in the hospital or during a medical challenge? Sometimes it is the gift of slowing down in our daily lives that allows us to see the power of nature that gives us a moment of awe and wonder. This uplifting transformative positive experience can create an opening to experience other positive emotions, and when this happens you could say that’s actually pretty awesome.

Touch Points
 
Contact Soaringwords to share a team-building event at your company, school or hospital. Contact greta@soaringwords.org or call us at 646-674-7105.
We have a few spots left in our summer internship program. Kindly send us bright and fabulous interns who want to get real-world experience and make valuable contributions to Soaringwords’ social media and special events this summer. Email heal@soaringwords and request an internship application.