Building Community Capacity: Niroga Trains Adults and Youth Leaders

To help our most vulnerable children, we not only have to teach them the skills they need, but we also need to teach these same skills to the adults around them, so they can be systematically reinforced.

Niroga has trained over 200 Yoga Teachers, including many of color, to serve vulnerable populations with cultural congruence and linguistic sensitivity. We have also trained over 100 adult providers, such as educators and mental health professionals, who work with youth in structured settings such as schools and juvenile halls. In a few hours, we can train anyone in these transformative skills, which can be used for personal stress management and self-care, as well in professional settings with students and clients. Our trainings have received an overwhelmingly positive response.

We recently conducted a 4-hour Transformative Life Skills (TLS) training for about 35 school-based behavioral health providers from several school districts in Alameda County (organized by School Health Services, Alameda County Behavioral Health Care Services), and the response was overwhelmingly positive. Feedback showed close to 100% satisfaction in all categories surveyed. Everyone unanimously felt that they had increased their knowledge and skills and had learned new tools to incorporate into their personal and professional lives. A participant said that this training was "inspiring, hopeful and revolutionary," while another said that "getting these trainings to teaching staff and administration is critical!!" Many clamored for "more time; all day, for several days."

One of the participants in the training was Dr. Micheline Beam, Clinical Supervisor, City of Berkeley Mental Health, who was involved in a Niroga program at B-Tech, an innovative continuation high school. She had exciting news: "Did you know that every one of the kids in the CBT/TLS (Niroga) program graduated? Every one of them!" At a place like B-Tech, where 98% of the youth were diagnosed with PTSD and the dropout rate is deplorable, this was unimaginable to them.