Healing Visualization

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Weather delays meant a lot of time in the airport…

After ingesting a Jamba Juice (hey it was a small one) I sat down next to a woman named Zoe who was going to Florida to meet her sister and daughter for a ten-day vacation. We started talking about life and she told me that she used to be a teacher until she had to retire because of illness.

She has a condition in her brain stem and is getting excellent medical care at Yale New Haven Medical Center. Zoe also has tremendous faith and a positive attitude.

I asked her about healing visualizations…

It was something she had never considered or tried. The idea of visualizations is that you can imagine your own healing in whatever ways make sense for you. It doesn’t replace medical treatment or medicine, yet it can enhance whatever you are doing by bringing yourself into the healing process front and center.

Huddled together amidst large screen TVs, flight announcements, toddlers, families and the drama that swirls around the gate, especially as it gets closer to departure time, we close our eyes and imagine the myelin in Zoe’s brain stem. “What does it look like? Is it like a silky spider web, silver and glistening? Is it yellow and sticky like beeswax from a buzzing golden hive dripping with honey and myelin?” We spend ten minutes zoning in and around Zoe’s brain stem in our imagination. I am speaking very softly and she is telling me what she sees inside her mind’s eye.

It was very quick and she “got it” immediately. It’s important to remember that everyone can take a few moments to go inside and pay attention to your body and gently envision the part that needs healing. By doing this each day you can visualize growth and movement that resonates best for you. It’s so fast and it really gives people a lot of hope and reduces feelings of helplessness.

Try it yourself or share the invitation with someone you love.

When it was time for Zoe’s flight to leave, I got a bit teary. I felt as if I was sending off my sister or newly found BFF on vacation. We had only spent an hour together and in that time Zoe touched my heart in a powerful way. We hugged and exchanged emails and phone numbers. She got in line with the other passengers. Like a vigilant mother, I watched her until she started to walk onto the ramp.

Suddenly, her head popped out from behind the column and she waved goodbye again.

August Newsletter

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I think I can, I think I can…. Over the past year, this adage from Watty Piper’s classic book, The Little Engine That Couldwas my mantra while juggling school and full-time responsibilities of running Soaringwords. Well folks, it’s official — my Capstone thesis has been approved and is published in Scholarly Commons. My empirical research study measured the impact of a positive Soaringwords intervention on the well-being of hospitalized children. Well-meaning, thoughtful expressions of compassion and empathy can facilitate growth. We have begun the next wave of research and will be expanding the study with additional hospitals in the fall. A few weeks ago, as a family tradition, my husband and I traveled to Maine to visit our son Josh in camp. I enjoyed a relaxing and rejuvenating mini-holiday. Savoring the moments while looking forward to the next soaring adventure.
Sending you much love and soaring words,

Soaringwords News

Recent cool Soaringwords events.

Soaringwords + Zumba® Fitness = Love for hospitalized children

Whenever I get together with Zumba® Fitness lovers, I may enter the room as a stranger, but I always leave as part of a powerful community. It was a thrill to participate in a Zumba® Fitness Master Class in Miami orchestrated by the generous Dr. Olgalucia Duran and 15 awe-inspiring instructors who came together to raise funds to support bringing free monthly Zumba® Fitness classes to pediatric patients, families and staff in Miami hospitals. If you are going to be at the Zumba® Fitness Instructor Convention in August, please stop by our table to learn more about Soaringwords’ Zumba® Fitness in hospitals initiative. (Photo Right: Dr. Olgalucia Duran, Manu Musica, David Topel and Constanza Moreira) MORE PHOTOS

Amma: The Hugging Healer

I was curious to meet the woman who had hugged more than 32 million people, so Greta, Soaringwords’ Community Relations Manager, and I trekked to Massachusetts to join hundreds of people at the final stop on Amma’s 2013 U.S. tour. We experienced the POWER OF LOVE and hugs from Mata Amritanandamayi, affectionately known as Amma, which means “mother” in Hindi. Amma is a spiritual master who runs a global healthcare organization in India. Being part of the community involves nurturing the community. Greta and I reported for early morning kitchen duties where we chopped potatoes, carrots and peppers for a hearty vegetable soup that was served at lunch. It was meaningful to contribute, although Greta noted that it felt like being in an I Love Lucy episode as we tried to cut vegetables in precisely instructed shapes and sizes. Learn more about the healing power of hugs VIDEO


Soaringwords went behind the scenes at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) Rain Room exhibit to create the latest SoaringMuseums® video to share on Soaringwords.org. Ill children and families can make a virtual museum visit while at home or in the hospital. Students will view the video as part of Soaringwords Educational Outreach initiatives where students engage in service learning projects to inspire hospitalized children and families. (Photo right: Rain Room creators Hannes Koch and Flo Ortkrass with Soaringwords’ Founder Lisa Buksbaum and Rachel Gorman, Director of Hospital Outreach & Wellness Education) VIDEO

Community Outreach at PS163

Summer school is serious business which is why 70 students at PS 163 look forward to a Soaringwords service learning program as the highlight of each week.  Even record high temperatures could not deter volunteers and students from creating wonderful gifts during each weekly module — SoaringSuperheroes®; SoaringConstellations; SoaringFables®; Hieroglyphs from SoaringMuseums®; and SoaringMurals® for hospitalized children. Please contact us if you’d like to volunteer at our expanded fall program in six NYC schools or to bring a Soaringwords Educational program to schools nationwide.


Marcella Palmer and Shea Maultsby of M.INK Productionshave been devoted and generous collaborators on multiple videos for the Soaringwords Book Club, as well as SoaringMuseums® –Hatshepsut at the Metropolitan Museum of ArtThree Centuries of Red and White Quilts at the New York Armory and most recently at MoMA’s Rain Room. Shea and Marcella are innovative professionals, always adding great value to each project. We had some great laughs  — such as the time the entire crew packed into Marcella’s SUV to get a clean audio track because the rain was too noisy during the Rain Room filming. If you have a production project that needs top notch talent, reach out to M.INK Productions.
SoaringHealth & Wellness

At the International Positive Psychology Association global conference in Los Angeles, I had the pleasure of creating a Soaringwords video, with Gallop senior scientist, Shane Lopez. We discussed his latest book, Making Hope Happen. Watch the video to discover the difference between hope and wishing.

Touch Points

Soaringwords has powerful employee-engagement service projects to add to your fall and 2014 conferences and meetings. If you know of fabulous, hard-working, brilliant students or grownups, we still have space in our Soaringwords internship programs for fall or winter. Contact us at: 646-674-7105,heal@soaringwords.org.

Soaringwords + Zumba Fitness

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“I look forward to teaching my monthly classes at Children’s Hospital. Seemingly healthy children and those hooked up to IVs join the fun, some in wheelchairs, all ready to dance. These are regular kids who just want to DANCE and have FUN. We have the pleasure of delivering joy. The joy spreads and follows them back to their rooms and changes the perspective life of those present forever!” – Richard Gormley, Zumba Education Specialist

In 2012, three weeks before the Zumba® Instructor Convention, Zumba Fitness CEO Alberto Perlman met Lisa Buksbaum, CEO & Founder of Soaringwords. They had a “meeting of the minds” and realized that it would be amazing to invite ZIN™ members to share love and passion with hospitalized children to inspire them to dance and experience some joy, even in the midst of serious medical challenges. After the Convention, three Soaringwords + Zumba Fitness delegations started sharing free monthly classes with hospitalized children in Ft. Lauderdale, Chicago and Atlanta.

Soaringwords is working closely with hospitals to bring more ZIN™ members into the collaboration each month. We would like you to be a part of this powerful wellness initiative.

Experience the energy of the Soaringwords + Zumba Fitness collaboration in photos and videos. Also, check out the photos taken at last year’s Zumba Fitness Instructor Convention in Orlando.

There are number of ways to help support this important initiative:

1. Make a donation
100% of your donation will go towards the coordination of hospitals and Zumba® Fitness instructors worldwide. With your support, we will be able to share the healing power of dance, movement, laughter, and community to transform the lives of pediatric patients. Click here to make a donation.

2. Volunteer at a Hospital
Would you like to volunteer to teach Zumba® Fitness classes to pediatric patients, families and staff in a local children’s hospital? We are looking for Zumba® Fitness Instructors who are licensed in Zumba® Fitness Kids to volunteer to lead monthly classes for hospitalized children. This is a great way to build awareness for you as a Zumba® Fitness Instructor and get more paying classes and clients.

If interested in volunteering:
a) Click here for 6 Easy Steps to bring Soaringwords + Zumba Fitness to children in your local hospital. 
b) We require instructors to complete the New Volunteer Questionnaire.
c) Review and sign Volunteer Dance Agreement with electronic signature.
d) Submit two Professional References. We encourage you to secure recommendations from a Supervisor at a gym or studio who knows you and your work, a ZES™ or ZJ™, a Supervisor from another field who knows you and your work, or a Supervisor from a non-profit organization where you have volunteered.
e) After you have identify your local hospital with a pediatric population and connect with the appropriate hospital professional, then customize Hospital Documents.
f) Visit Hospital Page to download Soaringwords Activities and to read Hospital Visitor Guidelines.

3. Volunteer at the office or remotely
Help coordinate Soaringwords + Zumba  Initiative. Click here to learn more.

4. Organize a Zumba® Master Class or Zumbathon® Charity Event 

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Planning a fundraiser is a great way to support Soaringwords and gain exposure in your community. Download Soaringwords + Zumba Event Planning Guide to get started.  See photos from events around the country to get inspired.  

5. Shop at the Soaringwords store
Proudly wear your Soaringwords T-shirt to show your commitment.

SOARINGWORDS’ MISSION is to inspire ill children and their families to take active roles in self-healing. Soaringwords is unique as it is the only organization to motivate ill children and families to “pay it forward” to help others. Studies show that when a child does something kind for another child it accelerates transformative healing. Soaringwords provides fun, creative and educational activities both in person and online based on positive psychology concepts.

December Newsletter

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Dear Friends, Since our last newsletter, Hurricane Sandy hit the northeast. Soaringwords’ office didn’t have any damage but many of our local hospitals and community partners were affected. Many people slept in our homes because they were out of power and without heat. We all came together as a community to support each other. Local school children decorated SoaringQuilts for children who lost their homes because of the storm. Work doesn’t stop and my life continues to be a bit of a whirlwind — while simultaneously being a wife, a mother and a daughter, I am working full time and attending school for my Masters in Positive Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. I am excited to report that hospitals around the country have signed up to participate in an empirical research study for my final project. I look forward to gathering the scientific data that supports the value of ill and hospitalized children participating in positive interventions (fun, distracting and meaningful Soaringwords activities) which enhance well-being and patient outcomes. Sending you strength and Soaringwords, Lisa

Make A Difference Day
For the third year in a row, BNY Mellon employees in 7 cities teamed up with school children for Make A Difference Day. Together they decorated SoaringQuilts® and SoaringPillows® with inspirational messages and artwork to donate to hospitalized children. The students and volunteers also participated in an exhilarating Zumba® Fitness class to celebrate health and wellness. Here in New York, we had the honor of working with P.S. 1 in Chinatown. Our favorite part of the day was watching Ms. Lau, the physical education teacher, break the ice by dancing salsa in front of the entire group!  MORE PHOTOS
Reaching Out with Zumba® Fitness
Thank you to the fantastic licensed Zumba® Fitness Instructors for launching classes at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, FL and Shriners Hospital for Children – Chicago.  Everyone – nurses, patients and parents- got into the fun! 750 licensed Zumba® Fitness instructors have volunteered to collaborate with Soaringwords and share monthly classes with hospitalized children and their families and hospital employees around the world.  MORE PHOTOS

Build a World of Loving Kindness Sometimes the best gift that we can give to those who are ill, is simply the gift of our presence. At the annual UJA/Jewish Board of Children and Family Services conference on Visiting the Sick, I spoke on The Power of Transformative Stories and shared my personal journey of how Soaringwords was born. I also led a workshop Using Technology to Support People who are Ill.  Above photo (right) Murray Nossel, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Director of Narativ. Dept. of Narrative Medicine, Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center.

Dream Catchers

Ashley and Nathan enjoyed creating beautiful, feathered Dream Catchers during their hospital stay at Komansky Center for Children’s Health at NY-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center. Dream Catchers come from Native American culture. It is believed that a Dream Catcher changes a person’s dreams, allowing only good dreams to filter through the web while bad dreams stay in the net, disappearing with the light of day. Make your own Dream Catcher to keep or to give to a friend as a gift! INSTRUCTIONS

Supporting Special Needs Families

In case you missed our seminar on Caring for Yourself as a Caregiver of a Special Needs Child at the 92nd Street Y, you can watch the recording here: http://www.92y.org/specialneeds
In order to care for our children, it’s crucial that we take time to nurture ourselves. It’s very common for caregivers to harbor feelings of guilt and a sense that there’s simply no time or energy left for themselves. When a family member, co-worker, or friend makes a well-intentioned but ultimately hurtful comment, people are left feeling raw. Dr. Catherine Lord, Director of the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain, joined me for a discussion which was shared with members of JCCs throughout North America, Autism Speaks, Starlight Children’s Foundation, Chai Lifeline, and schools that support children with special needs. The webinar was made possible through generous support from the CVS Caremark Foundation. (Photo left: Fretta Reitzes, Director, Goldman Center for Youth and Family, 92nd Street Y; Dr. Catherine Lord; Lisa Honig Buksbaum.)

SoaringStar – Jada

Ten-year-old Jada was an eager participant during one of our November hospital visits at The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore. In the hospital playroom, alongside other children and her grandmother, she made 8 SoaringSuperheroes, inspiring others with her drawings, enthusiasm and creativity.
SoaringHealth & Wellness What We Get When We Give-Not only does it feel great to help someone else, but it has a positive effect on our health and well-being. In Allan Luk’s book, The Healing Power of Doing Good, he explains this relationship citing the positive impact that volunteering has on the body and mind. His research concludes that regular helpers are 10 times more likely to be in good health than people who do not engage in altruistic activities (allanluks.com/helpershigh). Helping others reduces stress and releases endorphins, the brain’s natural painkillers. When individuals give to others, research demonstrates that both the giver and the receiver experience feelings of meaning and purpose (Seligman, 2011).  So, join us in doing at least one good deed a day.

Seminar: Caring for Yourself as a Caregiver of a Special Needs Child

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Proven Secrets to Give You Immediate Strength, Comfort and Calm. The seminar was filmed live at the 92nd Street Y. Click here to watch the recording for free.

In order to care for our children, it’s crucial that we take time to nurture ourselves. It’s very common for caregivers to harbor feelings of guilt and a sense that there’s simply no time or energy left for themselves. And when a family or friend makes a well-intentioned but ultimately hurtful comment, we’re left feeling raw. This seminar brings you together with two distinguished experts, Lisa Honig Buksbaum, CEO & Founder, Soaringwords, and Dr. Catherine Lord, Director of the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain, who will offer powerful tools, resources, and ideas that can transform any stressful situation for caregivers. This program is made possible through the generosity of the CVS Caremark Foundation.


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Larger than life.

My brother Gary had an infectious smile and a way about sensing what was going on for others. He was a brilliant lawyer, loving brother, son, uncle and friend. But what really made him exceptional was his love of life and ability to connect with others in deep and authentic ways. He was larger than life.

Today is the anniversary of his birth, he would have been 50 years old! To celebrate his legacy, I invite you to do something nice for a stranger or someone you love.

Larger than life – That’s what each of us becomes when we choose to help someone in need. It just takes a second to make the choice. And, if you have cultivated the habit of being a do-gooder, then you don’t actually have to choose, it simply comes naturally for you.

The moment you help someone pick up something they dropped, pause to hold the elevator doors for someone who needs a little more time, or visit or call someone who is going through a difficult time, that’s when you expand who you are, radiating love and compassion, even for a few fleeting moments. While the gesture is quick, the impact lingers in the air like the delicious aroma of fresh-baked bread or the smell of Oreo cookies that my brother and I devoured on spring nights as they were being baked in the Nabisco cookie factory, several miles from our home.

When you experience gratitude it reminds you of all the micro-moments that all of us often take for granted. When we experience connection with someone else, it triggers a positive chain reaction that cascades into other parts of our day. It produces more oxycotin (the happy hormone) which literally makes you feel better.

Sunny Day

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The Power of Positive Thinking

Imagine you wake up, look out the window and see a sunny day. You turn on the radio and learn that there is a 75% chance of rain. Before you pull on your slippers, thunderclouds already gather over your bed. While brushing your teeth, your mood darkens further as you imagine a soggy, miserable walk to school or work.

Stop for a minute. Let’s explore another way to start your day. You can choose to put your attention on something hopeful, the veritable silver lining. By putting your attention on something positive, you can broaden your perspective. Think of one thing, one small thing for which you are grateful.

Think of a person who has made a difference in your life. Close your eyes for a couple of minutes and think of a wonderful conversation, meal or activity that you enjoyed with this person.

Now you can put on those slippers and start your day.

Stop the Downward Sprial

This momentary reflection stopped negative emotions from pulling you into a downward spiral. Barbara Fredrickson calls this the Broaden and Build Theory. The more positive emotions you experience, the broader your perspective becomes.

These positive emotions build upon each other creating an upward spiral, rather than making you feel that the world is closing in on you. You should pack your umbrella in case of showers, but taking a few moments to pay experience positive emotions guarantees that you’ll have a more radiant day, no matter what external circumstances come across the horizon.

September Newsletter

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Dear Friends, I always loved Back to School rituals — buying new pencils, notebooks and new shoes! And, this fall, I am actually returning to school at the University of Pennsylvania’s Masters of Applied Positive Psychology program with 36 students from around the world. Penn is my alma-mater so it’s especially exciting to return to campus. During the next ten months, I’ll be spending one weekend each month in Philadelphia learning from the leaders of Positive Psychology and applying this knowledge to strengthen all of Soaringwords’ healing interventions in hospitals, schools and community centers. Wishing you much love, Lisa

Soaringwords + Zumba® Fitness = Love
Soaringwords was onsite at the Zumba® Fitness Instructor Convention in Orlando, 720 certified Zumba® Fitness Instructors signed up to teach monthly Zumba® Fitness classes to pediatric patients, Moms, Dads and nurses at children’s hospitals around the world.  MORE PHOTOS Mara, a fan of the Zumba® Fitness program and performer at ZUMBA® Fitness Concerts™, paid a visit to Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx where she serenaded patients, parents, nurses and doctors while four dazzling Zumba® Fitness Instructors led a class and danced along. MORE PHOTOS AND VIDEOS

Soaringwords Ferries to Martha’s Vineyard
On August 3, children and teens at the Chilmark Community Center paired up with students attending the Beacon Academy to share a hands-on community service initiative to benefit hospitalized children on Martha’s Vineyard and at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in NYC. Everyone came together and enjoyed a Soaringwords service-learning program where volunteers decorated 100 SoaringQuilts® and SoaringPillows® with inspirational messages and artwork to donate to ill children. MORE PHOTOS

Sharing Their Love

JPMorgan Chase employees in 43 branches in Louisville, KY participated in a community service project to embrace children at Kosair Children’s Hospital. Some employees got into the Olympic spirit and decorated sports themed quilts and pillows.

Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Health Getaway Lisa gave an inspirational talk at Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s annual Health Getaway at the beautiful Ritz Carlton on Amelia Island, off the coast of Florida. 300 participants came together to improve their health and embrace the Nutritarian lifestyle. On the last day of the conference, attendees mentored 30 children from the Miller Boys & Girls Club. Together everyone enjoyed the hands-on service project decorating quilts and pillows, followed by a high-energy Zumba® Fitness class to celebrate health, fitness and joy. MORE PHOTOS
Congratulations to Carol Evans, CEO & Publisher and her incredible team at Working Mother Media on the 10th Anniversary of the Best Companies for Multicultural Women Conference. I’ve been to the conference each year and I am proud to be part of this community of leading professionals committed to celebrating diverse talent and perspectives in all facets of business. It was so inspiring to spend two days with so many wonderful people. (Left photo: Erin Jensen, Director, Labor Relations and Founder of Women’s Group Sam’s Club and Donald Fan, Senior Director Global Office of Diversity, Wal-Mart. Right photo: Michele Sample, Director, Oncology Operations, and Ronny L. Osi-Efa, Project Leader, Promotions, GlaxoSmithKline Global)

SoaringStar – Tobias

The best part of running Soaringwords is meeting amazing people like Tobias. I traveled to Baltimore to interview him and his 7 siblings for my upcoming book, Soaringwords the Power to Heal, inspiring stories of magnificent individuals who are overcoming life’s pain and obstacles. Tobias had a brain-tumor at age six which resulted in sight and hearing losses. Today he does calculations without flinching, remembers entire books by heart, and loves to tell corny jokes radiating light + love. He is currently a college student and one of the most positive people I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing.
SoaringHealth & Wellness Caregivers have multiple stressors in their lives balancing the needs of loved ones with illness, other family members, work demands and figuring out a way to spend some precious time on their own. Join us on Monday, November 5 for a Caring for the Caregiver of Children with Disabilities presentation with world-renown expert Dr. Catherine Lord. Lisa and Dr. Lord will be presenting live at the 92nd Street Y and the event will be shared via Telepresence with audiences in JCCs throughout North America. This program is made possible by a generous donation from the CVS Caremark Foundation.

Touch Points

Join Soaringwords on Make A Difference Day, the largest day of volunteering in the U.S. Soaringwords proud to be a national non-profit partner with USA Weekend and the Hands On Network.  We are hosting events around the country on Friday, Oct. 26 – Oct. 28. Let us know if you’d like to create your own event with friends, family and co-workers or join an existing event. Contact Soaringwords

July Newsletter

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Dear Friends: I just got back from four days in Maine where I visited my youngest son Josh in camp; he is growing by leaps and bounds. The nature was so rejuvenating and inspiring, and I enjoyed working on my book while overlooking the sea.
This summer is sizzling at Soaringwords and we’re not talking about the temperature here in New York City. We are busy creating a webinar for caregivers of children with disabilities, and launching Soaringwords Book Club in hospitals nationwide. We are also gearing up for Make A Difference Day in October, the largest volunteer day of the year. Hope you will send me an email or give me a call to see how you can get involved and share “The Power to Heal.” Together, we can inspire millions of ill children to “Never give up!”. Wishing you much love and Soaringwords,

Soaringwords News

Some recent Soaringwords events. Birthday Party Celebration
The best way to celebrate your birthday is to share your happiness with others and that’s what I did!  Here is a special thanks from Valerie Miles, Child Life Specialist at Lincoln Hospital Everyone enjoyed decorating the SoaringHats and spending time together.  They all loved receiving their pillows and blankets as it offers a sense of comfort. Your volunteers and interns did an amazing job transforming the playroom into a birthday party with the balloons, fresh fruit and healthy pies. It was a great way for our children and families to relax while leaving their cares behind.” MORE PHOTOS
Other Soaringwords activities at hospitals this summer included SoaringGardens® and Painted Rock Animals.

Hottest Concert of the Year

Would you like to see Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Usher, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Lil Wayne, Shakira and dozens of Triple A List talent?! Thanks to our colleagues at iHeart Radio, Soaringwords is honored to offer special VIP concert tickets, including meet and greet after-party access to the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas. 100% of your ticket is a charitable donation to Soaringwords. Hope you can celebrate with us! LEARN MORE

Eat Your Greens

How many times have you heard “eat your veggies”? At Soaringwords we always knew the importance of eating your greens but after meeting Dr. Joel Fuhrman we started our office veggie challenge. Dr. Fuhrman is the New York Times best-selling author of Eat to Live, Super Immunity and Disease Proof Your Child. We are thrilled to collaborate with Dr. Fuhrman to create fun, educational and interactive material as part of SoaringNutrition, which will further inspire children and adults to embrace and enjoy a healthier life. If you want to bring SoaringNutrition to your company to reduce healthcare costs or to underwrite this project to reach millions of underserved children, give us a call.  Learn More

Soaring Mentors I.S. 229 students woke up bright and early on Saturday June 16 to volunteer and inspire hospitalized children to “Never give up!” They teamed up with super cool JPMorgan Chase employees at the JCC of Manhattan. Together they decorated quilts and pillows and participated in the dance jam lead by one of our favorite Nia teachers, Thomas Estler. MORE PHOTOS
MDC-Partner interns mentored 5th grade students from PS64 at their school in lower Manhattan. Together they celebrated the end of the school year and participated in Soaringwords’ day of service, working together in small groups to create SoaringJokes books, flip books, SoaringSongs® and social media content, all to be shared with hospitalized children and their families. The day was fun, creative and inspirational.

SoaringStar – Thomas Estler

Thomas Estler is a long time Soaringwords volunteer and is a whirlwind of energy and love. Traveling to several states, Thomas has led Soaringwords dance jams for many years. Whether darting through the gym, dancing on a picnic table top in New Orleans, leading workshops in hospitals or representing Soaringwords at a JetBlue or Facebook event, Thomas shines. Thomas’s struggle with childhood illness and obesity led him to his adult passion for health and fitness. Thank you for sharing your great enthusiasm, compassion and love of life. Your energy is contagious!
SoaringHealth & Wellness Have you ever heard of the term Nutritarian? As Dr. Joel Fuhrman taught us recently, a Nutritarian is a person whose food choices are influenced by nutritional quality. A Nutritarian strives for more micro-nutrients per calorie in their diet and they recognize that food has powerful disease-protecting and therapeutic effects. For optimal health and to combat disease (imagine having no sick days anymore), start adding foods into your diet that pack a lot of nutrition into each bite (especially green vegetables, mushrooms, onions, and fresh fruit). Sadly, in the Standard American Diet (SAD), less than 5% of the total caloric intake comes from vegetables and fruits. Nutritarians strive to consume at least 90% of their diet from nutrient rich foods, which science tells us will lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. This is most certainly food for thought!

Touch Points

Make A Difference Day-The Largest Day of Volunteering is on October 26-28. We invite everyone to Dance, Decorate and Donate. Contact us at Soaringwords if you’d like to share this powerful employee engagement initiative with your company nationwide or globally.

April Newsletter

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Dear Friends,
Here are the latest and greatest events going on at Soaringwords from Boston, New York and Toronto. We are proud to share a SoaringConcert featuring Clarissa Spata, a leading Australian Soprano live from Metropolitan Hospital. We hope you will join us at one of our upcoming events, or better yet, create your own Soaringwords event that will benefit hospitalized children in your community.

Wishing you strength and Soaringwords,


Soaringwords News

Some recent Soaringwords events from January and February. Soaring with JetBlue
For the third year in a row, Soaringwords was the national non-profit partner for JetBlues’ Light Up a Life Initiative in 60 Blue Cities across the country and the Caribbean. Thousands of JetBlue Crewmembers decorated 2,100 SoaringQuilts® and visited with hospitalized children and families to share the love. MORE PHOTOS

Reaching Out

January and February was a busy time for Rachel Gorman, our new Director of Hospital Outreach & Wellness Education. She led Soaringwords’ Hospital Outreach programs for hundreds of patients at Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York and The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore. Activities included SoaringDreamCatchers, and SoaringNamePoems. To celebrate Valentine’s Day we delivered our heart shaped SoaringPillows® to hospitalized children and families. MORE PHOTOS

Employee Team-Building

MDC-Partners, a wildly enthusiastic group of creative employees enjoyed team-building activities in NY and Toronto headquarters embracing hospitalized children at Komansky Center for Children’s Health at NY-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in NYC, Mount Sinai Hospital Toronto and five patients during their  treatment in the U.S. through the Global Medical Relief Fund. Many thanks to the BOOM! Communications team for the great video.

Soaring Mentors

Sallie Mae’s professional team mentored high school and college students from the Bottom Line at Sallie Mae’s Newton, MA offices. The program revolved around a Soaringwords’ Educational Outreach initiative that benefitted patients and their families at Boston Medical Center; The Ronald McDonald House of Boston; as well as homeless children and mothers residing at the Home for Little Wanderers. MORE PHOTOS

A Very Special Guest

Clarissa Spata, one of Australia’s leading Opera stars paid a visit and performed a song at Metropolitan Hospital in NYC.

SoaringStar – Norma Perez

As principal at Independent School 528, Norma Perez’ six year collaboration with Soaringwords enabled thousands of her students to become Youth Leaders through hands-on service projects. While she has enjoyed her first year of retirement, Norma has joined the Soaringwords team as our Volunteer Community Education Liaison Manager. Norma also co-facilitates Soaringwords Hospital Activities for children and families. Many thanks to  Norma for being so generous with her time and unwavering spirit! We are jazzed to have her on our team!

SoaringHealth & Wellness – Let’s Laugh

How many times a day do you laugh? If you are 3-5 years old, it is probably about 500 times. Unfortunately, if you are an adult, it is more likely to be less than 5 times a day. When we laugh, we are “in the moment”, without worry, breathing deeply and… healing our bodies. Since our bodies cannot differentiate between fake laughter and real laughter you can fake it and reap the same results (ease stress and anxiety, relax yourself and boost your immune system). Laughter Yoga has become a worldwide phenomenon with more than 6,000 Social Laughter Clubs in about 60 countries. Stay tuned for Soaringwords Laughter Yoga workshops and videos.

Touch Points

Contact Soaringwords to share a team-building event at your company, school or hospital. We are currently putting together “Take Your Child to Work Day” programs for April 26. Please let us know if you’d like Soaringwords to be the highlight of the day.
Copyright © 2012 Soaringwords, All rights reserved.


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Hello. Welcome to Soaringwords.
Since 2001, Soaringwords has hosted 300 bright, hard-working, enthusiastic, and talented fellows and interns.

You are invited to join us for an amazing VIRTUAL internship experience (with flexible hours and scheduling) that will change many lives, including your own. You have the opportunity to be part of Soaringwords, a successful and vibrant not-for-profit organization devoted to helping ill children, families, and adults take active roles in self-healing.

You have the opportunity to be part of a successful and vibrant not-for-profit organization devoted to helping ill children and families heal. If you have passion, creativity, energy and the desire to make valuable contributions to a small team during your internship, then we want you to be a part of our success.

We have many college students and graduate students who receive credit for their internships. We also are accepting Year-long GAP year interns who want to get valuable life skills prior to pursuing medical school, post-doctorate studies. 

Soaringwords’ mission is to inspire ill children, families, and adults to take active roles in self-healing. Soaringwords is unique as it is the only organization to motivate people grappling with illness and challenges to pay-it-forward to help others. When a person does something kind for an ill child, it accelerates their transformative healing. To date, Soaringwords has inspired more than 500,000 children, families, and adults to take active roles towards healing through proprietary expressive projects and Positive Psychology interventions. Soaringwords is a 501C3 not-for-profit organization. Click here for the Soaringwords Infographic. 


Sample Soaringwords Videos: 
Gabby: https://vimeo.com/12058512
The Value of High Quality Connections with Dr. Jane Dutton: http://www.soaringwords.org/jane-dutton-and-high-quality-connections/
The Power of Passion and Perseverance with Angela Duckworth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_lCtg-hUwQ
SoaringHaikus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kq7LK5MO8E8
Zumba video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XV1FRC8LvzU

How You Will Be Spending Your Time.
Skills-based contributions include the following priority areas:

  • We have recorded a brand-new SOARING into Strength Positive Health Video and Podcast series with leading experts including Tom Rath (New York Times and Wall Street Journal #1 best-selling author on strengths and  Move. Sleep); Kristin Neff the world’s expert on Self-Compassion; Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor (My Stroke of Insight) whose TED Talk has been seen by 25 million people; best-selling author Chip Conley (Wisdom @ Work; and Emotional Equations); and Tal Ben-Shahar, one of the top experts on Happiness. We are seeking Videographers/editors for videos and podcasts. We are looking for capable interns to lead production/editing of live video sessions and also to be able to edit Zoom platform video content. We are also looking for interns with strong writing skills, researching ability to assist in script development customized for each featured Positive Psychology expert we will interview.
  • Research for Positive Psychology content that will be shared with pediatric patients, their families, and healthcare professionals (nursing students and nurses; medical school students, residents, physicians) and hospital staff.
  • Social media support – posting and commenting on Soaringwords content on blogs, FB, Instagram, Twitter and other social media outlets. Market intelligence/analysis on other not-for-profit social media presence/content. Being part of the team that strategizes about Soaringwords social media brand.
  • Graphic designers/artists to create social media posts, Soaringwords workshop layouts, and artwork for healing tools to share with children in hospitals 
  • Working on grants: research and writing and editing. Helping secure donations from leading companies, foundations, individuals and government grants.
  • Working with leading companies for funding from employee-engagement programs and funding from corporate foundations: research and sending out requests for meetings.
  • Working with Lisa on the publication of her first book: SOARING into Strength. Interns will help to secure cover quotations from prominent authors, social media/crowd sourcing campaign to pre-sell books. Soaringwords Book Club: creating videos with leading authors to promote books on resilience, courage and positive topics to a Soaringwords audience.
  • Working with Soaringwords team to secure more hospital partners. Research and follow up with hospital executives to secure meetings for funding/collaboration.
  • Special events. Work with Soaringwords team to do viral and in-person friend-raising/fund-raising events.
  • Mentor Inner-city Children at Soaringwords Programs. Help lead fun in-school, after-school, camp, and hospital sessions that boost self-esteem as these children learn the power of “paying it forward” and giving to others using poetry, fables, artwork, super heroes, and other fun and creative projects.
  • Soaringwords’ Empirical Research Study with patients at the Lincoln Medical Center in the South Bronx. Located at 149th Street on the Grand Concourse, Lincoln Medical Center is easy to get to from the subway. Students will be part of the team measuring how an expressive arts intervention and a customized dance class impact pediatric patient well-being. We are submitting the findings for publication in a leading scientific journal.

You will learn about working in a professional office making contributions to the Soaringwords Team. You will work directly with the Soaringwords team to support the daily projects. No two days are the same, you’ll never be bored! Utilize the skills you have and learn new skills that will make a difference to Soaringwords and all the children, families and volunteers we serve.

If you are interested in joining our team please Download Application, fill it out and send it to lisa@soaringwords.org. as soon as possible. We will contact you to set up a phone or in person interview. We look forward to having you on our team.

Warm regards,
Lisa Honig Buksbaum, CEO & Founder, Soaringwords
Lisa@soaringwords.org   917-499-3783