New 4-Week Courses: Everyday Mindfulness

10 Year Anniversary


December 2008 Barnstable High School student murdered

August 2009 Two Barnstable High School graduates die by suicide.

Cape Cod community in crisis. What if...?


$5,000 100% fundraising

  • Creation of the Inner Resilience Project Raising $$ for one stress reduction program at BHS in the Alternative Learning Porgram
  • 1st 5K DeStress Express raises $5000. Many local businesses and community members willing to sponsor
  • CC Times article about the Inner Resilience Project creates public demand
  • 1st programs at Barnstable and Mashpee High School
  • Creation of non-profit started. Shift name from the Inner Resilience Porject to CALMER Choice (Cultivating Awareness, Living Mindfully, Enhancing Resilience)
  • 1st official board meeting. Executive Director sits as board chair, 501c3 status approved

Pictures: Patty, Bob, Katie, Fiona, David, Betsy


$15,000 raised

  • Founding instructor goes to Mindful Schools training over the summer
  • Grant writer hired. Demands for programs continues to grow. Word of mouth referrals
  • Volunteer driven. Passionate, hands on board
  • Five people sent to NYC for training in January of this year
  • 1st NPR interview and initial website and marketing materials created
  • Limited financial resources. Few if any operational routines exist
  • CALMER Choice logo changes to Calmer Choice after feedback from Suffolk University Marketing Program consult


$60,000 first grants received

  • Jon Kabat Zinn and others in the world of mindfulness offer support, goodwill towards organization following further NPR interviews
  • Calmer Choice Curriculum creation started, working group meeting monthly
  • 1st SWOT and Strategic Plan – rtecommneding staying within 5 districts, and focus on elementary school students
  • ED now paid 1 day a week. Instructors hourly. All other back office needs volunteer
  • Demand for programming greater than capacity
  • Relationship with Tufts University begun

Picture: Caroline



  • Tufts University begins research with Mashpee, DY and Chatham schools
  • Barnstable District Issues emerge. Told to put all programs on-hold until Calmer Choice Programs evidence based
  • Calmer Choice trademarked
  • 1st major presentation at Umass Center for Mindfulness
  • Mindful Magazine features Calmer Choice and founding story creating national
  • Jon Kabat Zinn speaks at CCCC launching the Calmer Choice Speaker Series, sold out
  • New relationship with Yale researchers begun


$174,000 budgeted

$224,299 raised

16% schools, 33% donations,26% fundraisers, 25% grants

  • Part time administrative assistant hired along with first shared office space
  • 1st Calmer Choice Instructor Training initiated
  • Support of foundations and funders continue to grow with increased public recognition
  • ED hired fulltime and steps down as board chair
  • Courage of Conscience award presented at Quaker Meeting House
  • Tufts University presents outcomes/research Calmer Choice board with positive results
  • Yale Research project begins in Cape Cod Light House Charter, Mattacheese Middle and St Francis , grade 6


$345,000 budgeted, $394,437 raised

12% schools, 28% donations, 26% fundriasers, 34% grants

  • Three year Tower Tech grant awarded allowing for organization to begin purchasing its own equipment including computers and copy machine
  • Creation fo the beginnings of the Calmer Choice Partner School model
  • Moved to larger office space in South Yamouth
  • 1st NATIONAL Calmer Choice Presentation in California
  • 1st Part Time resource development staff funded by the CC Foundation
  • Yale presents research at CCCC. Cape Cod Times covers event creating further interest across the country
  • Full Time Program Director and School and Cmmunity Based Program Director now in place creating significant financial changes from previous years

Pictures: Stephanie, Sasa, Forest, Paula


$500,000 budgeted, $617,220 raised

13%schools, 28% donations, 21% fundraisers, 38% grants

  • Record budget passsed by the board
  • Concerned parent steps forward in DY following Calmer Choice Brings Satan to Cape Cod Schools letter to the editior leading to first hire of a PR firm and much research into the First Amendment/Establishment Clause
  • MIT Research begun in Dorechester at Boston Collegiate Charter School
  • Calmer Choice becomes thought leaders in how to bring Secular Mindfulness into public schools
  • Board turnover with roles shifting
  • Calmer Choice invited to create anOMEGA conference with 24 other national thought leaders concerning the Secular issue of schools and mindfulness

Pictures: Karen H, Michaela, John Fulone


$615,000 budgeted, $648,398 raised

18% schools, 28% donations, 16% fundraisers, 38% grants

  • Initating of new website begun. Professionalizing operations happening in house
  • Establish and improved relationships with key funders and donors noted
  • Invited to do a State House presentation to legislative delegation.
  • Invited to Bridging Hearts and Minds Conference as Keynote Speakers- Secular Mindfulness in Schools
  • Calmer Choice ominted for the Non-Profit Excellence in Innovation Award at State House

Pictures: Sue Curran, Mary Acunzo, Sherry Santini


$679,000 budgeted, $659,276 raised

13% schools, 32% donations, 19% fundraisers, 33 % grants

  • Instructor training hosted by Falmouth District with 5 school districts involved.
  • First full time off Cape hire with expertise in the area of development
  • Part time Community Based Program Director
  • Increased in house marketing and communication procedures
  • Transitioning of Founding Staff
  • 50K in State Budget for CC prevention programming

Pictures: Peggy, Chris Brenner, Liam, Emily, Patience



  • Full-time School-Based and Community based Director positions filled with the restructuring of the programming department
  • First Off Cape school program initiated in Marion
  • Adding professionals to the board with expertise in various needed areas
  • More invitations happening to speak about teaching secular mindfulness in schools
  • Multi-Year Strategic Planning Process underway.

Picture: Laura Newstead

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