Brothers Ali Smith '94, P'25, '30, and Atman Smith '96, along with Andres Gonzalez, all co-founders of The Holistic Life Foundation, were featured on Good Morning America this week to promote their newly released book Let Your Light Shine, How Mindfulness Can Empower Children and Rebuild Communities. In the book, the authors share how yoga and meditation transformed their lives and inspired them to start their foundation that has helped thousands of historically underserved kids in Baltimore.
Founded in 2001, The Holistic Life Foundation has provided yoga and mindfulness education for Baltimore residents and beyond. Ali and Atman met Andres at the University of Maryland College Park during their last semester. The three discovered a shared interest in reading books about spirituality, philosophy, and other related topics. They also started learning more about yoga and developing their practice under the guidance of Ali and Atman's godfather - Ali and Atman grew up with yoga and meditation in their lives.
After graduation, the Smith brothers moved back to their childhood home in West Baltimore and noticed that the “sense of family that was present in the neighborhood when they grew up there was gone...They knew they wanted to do something to help bring that feeling back to their neighborhood." They began making plans to form a non-profit organization, and in December 2001 the Foundation was officially incorporated.
To watch the Good Morning America clip, click here.
To read more about their journey in The Baltimore Banner, click here.
Photo credit: Ariana Perez for The Baltimore Banner