As we look back on 2021, we can't help but reflect on all we've accomplished in our first year at Soul Seated Journey— and all that's happened as a whole. And it was possible, because of you.
Here's a closer look at our recap of the Youth Warrior program and what's ahead in 2022. We look forward to continuing the Soul Seated Journey to mobilize love so resilient youths can thrive with wholeness, courage, and connection- to themselves and others.
Youth Warrior Results & Outcomes
Here are key highlights of program results:
95% of the kids attended the weekly program for seven consecutive weeks.
100% of the kids said the program is high quality and relatable.
100% Improvements in all eight wellness areas we worked on during the proof-of-concept pilot for the kids, with a 22% increase in their ability to manage stress.
To be sure we were making a difference, we surveyed the kids on day one and after week seven. What did they tell us?
35% increase in their physical fitness and healthy eating habits
31% increase in their ability to cope with daily stress
33% increase in their positive mindset
32% increase in their financial management skills
26% increase in their self-confidence
The greatest reward? Hearing this:
And oh, this one is pretty special too:
I felt a sense of belonging and that’s so important. We need interaction, especially since COVID. Every single person and class was special. The sessions were all different, with no repeats, and I learned things I can really apply to life. I liked that the program was near my home. It made me feel more comfortable like I was already a part of this community.
Our youth were learning the art of 'how to be' what they wanted to see and become. What we are seeing and hearing are the life-changing perspectives and behaviors that, as adults, we have learned are essential to success, inward and out, but is often not taught at school or seldom developed at home. For more youth testimonials, click here.
These were some of the highlights. Feel free to reach out for more data results, information or insights uncovered. Hopefully, we can formally synthesize and publish our heuristic evaluation to share broadly when we have more time, bandwidth, and resources.
New Board of Directors
We are excited to share that Ricardo Tejada, Roxanne Buchwitz, and Pete Karolczak have joined our Soul Seated Journey Board. As in any other organization, particularly in the early stages of gestation, there is nothing more important than its Board Members who can open doors and propel the vision forward with swift momentum. Hence, we are beyond thrilled as each heart-centered visionary brings a unique and diverse set of experiences and backgrounds to support us in building the world we see. Learn more about our Board.
A Website Makeover
We have a new look and are starting to tell our story! It didn’t take long (our first meeting in October, actually) before our Board said it was critical for our website to reflect the end-to-end ecosystem behind the “Together, we rise” model.
We want to share “the why,” how we are uniquely positioned to tackle the youth mental health crisis, and demonstrate the power behind a partnership-based integration model, powered by technology for scale. Just look at Amazon!
Using business and technology for good can create exponential value and scale collective impact to start closing the chasm between the high demand positive wellbeing needs and the low availability of services. We hope you check out our new site and share it with others!
A website, and importantly, a bridge to you, will not build itself. Joining our 'love train' is November is Kevin Thomas, a tenured marketer, Bay Area raised, and San Franciscan resident. Kevin is here to enable our mission as the Head of Marketing and Communications. Kevin is helping us "get the word out," stay connected, and run like a "well-oiled machine." We are stoked that he's joined our team in building a world where everyone can experience positive wellbeing. Besides continuing the effort to build our presence and awareness, Kevin is doing a lot of thinking man poses, thought-mapping, and mouse clicking to help build a bridge to you and others important to us. Please join me in welcoming Kevin!
A New Aspiration to Combat Our Youth Crisis
We aspire to put wellbeing wisdom and wellness programs into the hands of 1,000,000 resilient youth by 2025.
In the wake of the Surgeon General declaring a national emergency in youth mental health crisis, we are not sitting idly by. We have a dream that one day, soon, every young person facing adversities can access insightful knowledge, personalized guidance, and ongoing support they need to transform their life into a remarkable story of triumph and inspiration to others.
Why shouldn't everyone have their own on-demand "Super Soul Sunday" team to help navigate life?
We have the science, tools, talent, and technology to end the soaring depression, anxiety, loneliness, and suicide rates. Instead, we can rewrite the script to create communities of heart-led youth impacting their lives and others through their wholeness, courage, and compassion.
Youth Warrior 2.0
"Give youth access to a clear roadmap that goes deep enough to overcome their core challenges and a dedicated "(life) Journey Team" that guides them toward lasting outcomes, and we'll start seeing youths thrive."
We plan to offer a Youth Warrior 2.0 during summer 2022 to more kids with even more services at Bayview Hunters Point again, and hopefully with expansion to other Bay Area communities and schools.
Our Three Goals:
Redesign our program ("Youth Warrior 2.0") based on feedback and learnings,
Incorporate routine wellness services, and
Develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) learning and care delivery app
By leveraging technology, our objective is to:
Extend our reach.
Improve youth engagement.
Deliver timely support.
Meet the kids where they are- at home or school.
Listening with Eyes and Heart
As we have done this year, we will step into "a day in the life" of the youth cohort to ascertain what’s most critical to then develop a “fit for purpose” program with local services for continued integration support. Not acting on our assumptions and deep listening with eyes and ears means we have a greater ability to personalize and customize for unique needs.
Seed Fundraising to Build What Is Possible
"Did you say a million kids in three years, Tiffany?" Yup, you heard correctly. It is a lofty goal, but one I know in my bones is possible with compassionate vows and mighty hearts.
Together with our Board of Directors, we have taken our "operational chops" and startup experience to devise a phased plan of people, processes, and technology necessary to achieve this destiny. The estimated cost?
$2.9M over three years.
In the grand scheme of things, it's a small cost compared to the innocent life lost and the rippling negative effects of disharmonious communities. (And frankly, it's smaller than business units I've previously managed and for FAR greater social impact). Nonetheless, it is a sizable fund we must raise. We hope you can share the word to help us garner the support donations we need to reach our young people.
Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter and for your continued support. We hope you will continue to join us in our Soul Seated Journey. More next month!
— Tiffany Liu
Read more about how Tiffany's unexpected journey had her leaving her dream job as a “successful” Silicon Valley executive to become a soul-seated journeyer.
How Can You Help?
Here are some of the ways you support the journey:
Connect to Bay Area Schools or Facility in Need:
Do you know of a school or facility that can benefit from our services? We are looking to support schools or foster care facilities in low-income communities who have the most need for their students' and kids' well-being. Please let us know. We can help.
Recommend Youth Wellness Change Makers
Do you know of like-hearted youth wellbeing educators, thought leaders, or local Bay Area wellness providers who are doing amazing work to help change the life trajectory of resilient youth? If so, please introduce us. We'd love to team up!
Volunteer and Share Talent
Are you, or anyone else you know, passionate about building up our generation or wanting to climb their second mountain of contribution? From business development to UX/UI design and application development, we are always on the lookout for like-minded volunteers. We are also seeking a heart-centered technology lead.
Give Financially or In-Kind Gifts
Soul Seated Journey has been blessed with small grants and in-kind donations from professional legal advisory and support to product design workshops. We appreciate continued in-kind donations to make the little reserve we have toward the mission and not the overhead of running one.