The list of great reasons to attend our 11th Annual Gala is almost endless! But we boiled it down to the Top 5, and made it into a helpful infographic. We hope to see you on November 5th! Get tickets by clicking here!
Kula for Karma has been operating programs in hospitals since we first began offering therapeutic yoga to patients, 11 years ago. One of the most alarming trends we've observed in more than a decade of working in clinical settings is the rise in stress, burnout, depression, and suicide among physicians, medical residents, nurses, and other caregivers.
As a result, we began to turn our focus to offer therapeutic yoga, mindfulness, and stress-reduction classes not only to patients but also to the medical personnel who care for them. And the demand we've seen for this offering has been growing exponentially.
Stress and burnout can lead to preventable medical errors and patient deaths, and they can spiral into a depression that's all too common among doctors but rarely spoken about because of the prevailing culture within medical institutions.
In an article published on July 12 in Thrive magazine, Arianna Huffington noted that "Almost two-thirds of doctors in the U.S. say they're burned out, depressed, or both." And according to a study in The Lancet, the suicide rate among physicians is more than double that of the general population. A report published by ABC News puts the figure for physician suicides much higher, at three to five times the rate of the general population.
That's a statistic—and a reality—that we, as a society, cannot afford to look away from, or avoid talking about. This is a public health crisis hiding within our very health institutions, affecting everyone, medical personnel and patients alike.
Fortunately, there is growing awareness among hospital administrators, doctors, and chief medical officers that medical personnel need to practice regular self-care in order to prevent burnout, manage stress, and be able to adequately care for patients. One tool that hospitals can offer to their staff to help them practice self-care is therapeutic yoga and mindfulness.
Kula for Karma is on the leading edge of these hospital-based programs for caregivers, with three additional programs starting up this summer at leading hospitals in New York City and Miami, and numerous other programs in the works.
These weekly classes are not for hospital patients but exclusively for doctors, medical residents, nurses, and other hospital staff. Therapeutic movement and stretching, mindfulness, breath work, and other forms of relaxation are taught to help medical personnel learn to regulate their stress levels and cope better with the enormous challenges they face on the job.
Clearly, there is an enormous cultural change that needs to take place within medical institutions in order to better care for the professionals who care for the rest of us. As everyone who's ever flown on a plane knows, "put your own oxygen mask on before you try to help someone else." Doctors and other medical personnel need to practice self-care, for their own benefit first of all, but also for the benefit of every patient they see.
Physician, heal thyself! Kula for Karma is here to help.
Kula for Karma
We are proud today to unveil our new Kula for Karma logo and tagline: “Discover the Heart of Therapeutic Yoga.” Our updated brand identity signals a renewed focus for Kula for Karma as we celebrate our 10th year.
We engaged award-winning NYC-based brand strategy and marketing firm Wasabi Rabbit to develop the new identity. While our name remains the same, our new brand identity reflects the outcome of months of strategic soul-searching and a renewed sense of clarity about our mission.
“Kula for Karma has always been a nonprofit organization driven by volunteerism and a desire to give back to those most in need of therapeutic yoga,” says the organization’s founder and President, Geri Topfer. “That spirit isn’t easy to quantify or express in communications because it’s really about love—it’s something that comes from the heart. The new brand identity created for us by Wasabi Rabbit captures that spirit beautifully.”
Executive Director Penni Feiner adds: “This is a banner year for Kula for Karma. Nobody else was really doing this when we started the organization 10 years ago. Now we’re at a turning point as we reflect back on the things we’ve accomplished in the last decade, and look ahead to what we want to accomplish in the next decade. Wasabi Rabbit helped us get strategic clarity about our mission, and gave us a brand identity that reflects that. It’s an exciting and modern new face for Kula for Karma at a pivotal moment in our evolution.”
“The visual and verbal elements of the brand were created to work together,” explains Dennis Hunter, Kula for Karma’s Director of Marketing and Communications. “At the center of the logoform is a heart, radiating outward with warm, earthy colors into an icon that evokes the idea of a lotus flower, a traditional symbol of yoga, life and healing. At the same time, the tagline also refers to the heart, and emphasizes Kula for Karma’s pioneering leadership in the field of therapeutic yoga.”
Today’s reveal of the new brand identity is the opening salvo in a year of celebrations that will culminate with Kula for Karma’s 10th annual Gala, in November 2017. Planning for the Gala is already underway, and sponsorships are available for both individuals and institutions.
Stay tuned for more news about this year’s Gala. Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media channels to keep up with day-to-day news about Kula for Karma. And sign up for our email newsletter here on the web site!
We look forward to connecting with you soon!
Geri Topfer, Founder and President
Penni Feiner, Executive Director