Back to School: Student Ambassadors Lead the Way

September 29, 2022

Mind-body skills are essential life skills for people of all ages—and it’s never too soon to start practicing them. That’s why our collaborations with school systems are a vital part of our mission to help communities around the world develop the tools they need to heal trauma and build resilience.rnrnWe’re grateful for the many hands who make our healing work in schools possible: CMBM faculty and staff; students; teachers, counselors, administrators, and school support staff; parents and guardians; local partner organizations; and generous funders.rnrnIn honor of back-to-school season, we’re celebrating the role of students in building resilient communities—from Broward County, FL to Gaza!

In Broward County, FL, Mind-Body Ambassadors ensured a warm welcome for their peers at Broward County high schools. Student leaders from the Mind-Body Clubs at Cypress Bay High School and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School connected with new students during outreach at freshman orientation and open house events.rnrnThe Marjory Stoneman Douglas Mind-Body Club was the first in the Broward County Public Schools system. Founded by MSD teacher and CMBM Faculty member, Diane Wolk-Rogers, the club provided a way for students to cope—and help one another cope—with the trauma of the 2018 school shooting.

I didn’t see my students as victims, I didn’t see them as survivors. I saw them as community leaders.


u003cdiv class=u0022block-editor-rich-text__editable rich-textu0022 role=u0022textboxu0022 contenteditable=u0022trueu0022 aria-multiline=u0022trueu0022 aria-label=u0022Quote textu0022u003ernu003cblockquoteu003eu003c!u002du002d wp:quote {u0022alignu0022:u0022centeru0022,u0022classNameu0022:u0022is-style-defaultu0022} u002du002du003eu003c/blockquoteu003ernu003c/divu003ernIn addition to teachers, counselors, and administrators, students in Broward County have been trained in mind-body medicine. Those students, in turn, share mind-body techniques with their families, friends, and the greater community. Mind-Body Ambassadors have even u003ca href=u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003eled workshops for healthcare executivesu003c/au003e.

Young students meditate in the queue before school in Gaza

6,572 miles away in Gaza, an organic parallel has developed, with student leaders serving as CMBM Ambassadors in schools.rnrnCMBM Gaza, led by Country Director Jamil Atti, PhD, recently helped Khan Younis schools kick off the academic year mindfully as part of the Healing and Hope 3 Project. Program supervisors shared self-care skills with teachers and administrators, and collaborated on plans for the integration of mind-body approaches in classrooms and the school environment. CMBM Ambassadors play an important role in these integration efforts; they represent the work in action. After learning and experiencing mind-body skills, CMBM Ambassadors share their experiences with peers, and help lead classmates in practicing mind-body skills.

I benefited from the mind-body skills a lot. I’m no longer afraid nor nervous during exams. I get stressed and unable to focus, but now I practice the breathing exercises and am able to focus…


The Healing and Hope 3 Project, which represents the continuation and deepening of a years-long collaborative effort, has been welcomed by teachers, principals, parents, and students in 10 schools across the Khan Younis Governorate. To hear more about the project’s impact, u003ca href=u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003evisit Facebook to watch u003c/au003eu003ca href=u0022 target=u0022_blanku0022 rel=u0022noopeneru0022u003ethis touching videou003c/au003e.rnrnu0026nbsp;