By YVONNE P. MORRIS
A popular biblical quote says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, And even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Pamela Reid embodies that philosophy with her Dream Catchers for the Soul, Inc. (DCFTS), a non-profit organization founded in 2012. The Broward County resident has a passion for youth empowerment that prompted her creation of DCFTS to serve youth not only in her county, but in neighboring counties. Reid said that the organization “aspires to offer a safe space where children can be nurtured and empowered to live up to their highest potential”
For the last three years, DCFTS has been on its empowerment mission, using holistic wellness tools such as mindfulness meditation and yoga. Why mindfulness and yoga?
“Research shows that if we can teach our children how to become aware of and tap into their innate strength, creativity, gifts, and passions, they stand a good chance of growing up to be whole, balanced, confident adult,” Reid explained.
She is, apparently, on to something wonderful since more and more educators and medical practitioners are recognizing that practices like meditation and yoga have physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual benefits for children. Schools are incorporating these practices into their curricula, recognizing their ability to help students maintain focus, restore calm, and reduce the anger and anxiety that many of them experience daily.
On Aug.1, DCFTS held its third annual Children of the Lotus workshop, where children from the tri-county areas enjoyed a day of free classes in mindfulness, yoga, self-esteem building, healthy cooking, and other holistic wellness practices. Experts in the holistic wellness field donated their time to this event, recognizing the value to the children.
This year’s workshop was held at the Miramar Civic Center, and had over 150 participants. In previous years, the workshop has been held at the Universal Truth Center in Miami Gardens, and at the Miami Dade College North Campus.
In addition to the annual workshop, children gather on the Hallandale beach on the second Saturday morning of the month, and are taught meditation and yoga. The popular event is attracting not only children, but also their parents and adult relatives.
Reid said, “This is only the beginning for DCFTS because we plan to expand our services to include mentoring, summer and other camps that teach our children the practices of meditation, yoga, and other holistic wellness tools to help them to be all they were created to be.”