Addressing Youth Gun Violence w/Reiki

In an effort to address youth gun violence and build bridges between law enforcement and Evanston's 5th Ward residents, several community groups pooled their resources to create this wonderful Meet Our Community event. Reiki Brigade volunteers Laurie Goldstein, Jennifer Dexheimer, Stephanie Yau, Edit Nagy and I were honored to offer Reiki throughout the day to attendees. In the end we introduced 59 folks to Reiki. Here's how it went:

We started off working on the large Northwestern student group who volunteered to help vendors set up their booths (thanks guys!) They loved the Reiki and walked away chattering enthusiastically about their experiences. 

In addition to the other vendors and community members, there were many EMTs, firemen, and law enforcement officers in uniform giving presentations and interacting with the crowd. Because first responders are one of our big target audiences for ongoing Reiki programs, we approached them all to offer them Reiki. Most everyone was polite, but it was difficult to get them into a chair to try it. 

Lesson learned:  Cops in in uniform will not close their eyes and go inward for a metaphysical experience. They are ever vigilant and outwardly focused. 

After the busy start participation slowed so we took the opportunity to visit the many food booths (samosas! ice cream!). 

Later in the day, after it cooled down, we had a second wave of enthusiastic takers. Many of them had incredible experiences, hugged us, and were eager to learn more. 

I have three new clients on my schedule this week and I'm pretty sure two of them are from this event. Love opportunities to further educate folks about the incredible benefits of Reiki!

We try to take a group photo at the end of each event. Because we divided this long day into two shifts, we didn't get the first shift in the picture. Shown here:  Jennifer, Edit and myself. Not pictured: Laurie and Stephanie!

Special thanks to Jennifer Dexheimer, who showed up early to help me set up, provided a much-needed bungie to lash the banner down in the wind, jumped in to work both shifts after another volunteer called in sick, helped move the entire tent when the volume at the sound stage became too much of a distraction, and wrestled the tent back into the case after it had apparently grown to five times its previous size. Event MVP:  Jennifer Dexheimer!