Calmer Choice, non-profit organization in Barnstable, Massachusetts Calmer Choice, non-profit organization in Barnstable, Massachusetts

Programming Updates: Spring 2021

Over the past year, with all of the restrictions and uncertainty, life, at times has seemed to slug along. However, now, amidst the rebirth that spring brings, comes a renewed sense of hope. We see the pace picking up and a shift happening. We are bearing witness to that post-traumatic growth that is often possible after a traumatic event - bouncing back with new perspective and skill. Calmer Choice programming is not absent from this growth as we have a number of exciting things currently happening and on the horizon as well.

With a sigh of relief and joy in our hearts, we are finally able to be with kids again in their classrooms, albeit virtually! Based on classroom setup, we are doing this in a variety of ways … AND … it is always interesting trying to figure out camera position and microphone range! We are working in the school districts of Dennis-Yarmouth, Falmouth, Nauset, and Old Rochester, with students in grades ranging from elementary – middle school. Our pre-recorded content of elementary lessons is also being piloted in many Cape Cod districts as well as in a school in Old Rochester and Connecticut.

Additionally, we have been busy providing workshops and our Mindfulness – Cultivating Resilience & Well-Being 8 week course to a number of businesses and organizations, and not surprisingly, the most requested topic is STRESS.

In our continued collaboration and partnership with organizations and businesses looking to support their members and employees with skills to help reduce the impact of stress and uncertainty we have brought mindful awareness programs to the following groups:

  • Boston University Social Work Master’s Degree Program
  • Alzheimer’s Family Support Group of Cape Cod- caregivers and those with Alzheimer's
  • Duffy Health Center
  • Child Advocacy Center of Brockton
  • Plymouth County Outreach
  • Barnstable and Worcester County District Attorney’s Office employees
  • Homeless Prevention Council
  • Dominican University educators
  • Old Rochester Regional School District Educators
  • Nauset School District Educators

The programming team has adopted a new process for creating programs- it’s called SCRUM and is derived from the rugby term that means “huddle.” In the first scrum, the team created a new 4-week course called Everyday Mindfulness, which focuses on the informal practice of mindfulness and how to bring it into your daily life. The 1st class launched on April 29th and the 2nd class will launch on May 11th from 7-8:15pm. This is an introductory course to mindfulness open to anyone as well as open to individuals that have previously other courses with us.

Members from our instructor team are currently “scrumming” to create a virtual parent/child class to be launched at the end of May. Stay tuned for details on this new 4-week offering.

As the weather began to change, and the world started to come out of “hibernation,” a group of our instructors found joy in connecting with nature as they did a short training in nature awareness through Barnstable Land Trust. This training will give our instructors the ability to lead nature awareness walks with Barnstable Land Trust as well as adding a nature awareness component to our own programming.

So in this season of spring, we remain hopeful. Hopeful for our present moments and hopeful in looking toward the future and what lies ahead. Our mindfulness practices helped to support us through the past year’s trials and tribulations, and they continue to support us in our well-being, allowing us the space and creativity to move forward.