THE SEAN O'SHEA FOUNDATION

Rating: 4.96 stars   51 reviews

Issues: Children & Youth

Location: 3397 HOLLOWTREE DRIVE OCEANSIDE CA 92058 USA

Mission: To empower youth through yoga, nutrition and optimistic teachings that help to develop life skills that can enable youth to take responsibility for their life, develop respect for themselves and others, and have confidence in their own potential
Results: The Foundation has offered these programs to nearly 2000 children in the past two years and not one child has had to pay for these programs thanks to the friends & supporters of the Sean O’Shea Foundation...New program for 2010 & 2011: Yoga and nutrition for pregnant teens. Yoga for teen mom and babies Yoga and nutrtion for the Juvenile Court schools Partnering with Rady Children's Hospital Healthy coaches program partnering with over 45 schools in San Diego and now reaching out to Los Angeles.
Target demographics: Low-income, at risk youth between the ages of 9-18 living in San Diego County and now serving Los Angeles County.
Direct beneficiaries per year: We serve approximately 1500 children per year and hoping to increase these numbers with fundraising and grants.
Programs: 1). SIGNATURE SEVEN WEEK YOGA AND NUTRITION PROGRAM: Our signature seven-week program is offered at the school once a week for one hour before, during or after school. The curriculum includes basic yoga poses as well as nutrition and eco-awareness concepts. Mats, blocks, straps, and supplies are supplied by the foundation. 2). YEAR ROUND YOGA PROGRAM: This school-based program starts in the fall and includes our signature curriculum taught by our certified yoga teachers. After the initial seven weeks, a school representative is trained by the foundation to teach the weekly yoga practice for the rest of the school year. THE SEAN O’SHEA FOUNDATION MENTOR PROGRAM: The foundation can provide an experienced yoga mentor to all participating schools needing assistance or advice while instructing the program. 3). YEAR ROUND YOGA & NUTRITION PROGRAM: This program contains all of the above and also includes a student body assembly on nutrition. Nutrition curriculum guides are provided to teachers who want to offer a weekly 15 minute nutrition lesson in their classroom. NUTRITION ASSEMBLIES: Our nutrition educators present a 30-45 minute nutrition lesson which includes tips for healthier eating habits, nutritional value on calorie intake, an overview of the food groups, and the medical risks of obesity. PowerPoint and hand visuals are used. 4). CURRICULUM ORIENTATION/TRAINING: We offer an orientation and mini training for all volunteers, contracted yoga teachers and school representatives. Information covered includes: our seven-week curriculum, basic tips for working with at-risk youth, nutrition education, and foundation policies. Training is held twice a year. 5). KIDS HELPING KIDS YOGA: This weekly donation-only yoga class is offered for young people ages 12-17. The class is held every Tuesday from 4-5pm at the Ashtanga Yoga Center in Carlsbad.

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Being involved with the Sean O'Shea Foundation is something I am very grateful for. This amazing family-run non-profit is doing important work in Southern CA with some of the most at-risk kids. As a student at the only fully accredited Mind-Body Medicine PhD program in the world, I see over and over again in the research that self-regulation is the single biggest factor in a child's success: in school, in relationships, in career, and in life. I know this, so I practice yoga and meditation daily to improve my academic success, my relationships, my health, and my ability to adapt to life stressors. How wonderful that the Sean O'Shea Foundation is introducing these life-long skills that will create lasting change and the ability to cope, and thrive, to the most at-risk children in Southern CA. However, it doesn't stop there. Yoga and improved self-regulation decreases criminal behavior and increases compassion, therefore the SOSF is giving back to all of us by transforming society. If there is any way you can get involved: volunteering, fundraising, attending fundraising workshops, etc. you will be providing a meaningful service to others, as well as yourself.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Like most non-profits, the Sean O'Shea Foundation could use more resources to expand their work and serve more kids. They could use help with fundraising, technology, marketing, etc. There is no shortage of heart here, we've got that covered :)

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars   Featured Review

I first became acquainted with the Sean O'Shea Foundation when I received a flyer for a free chair yoga training for educators from a school nurse I worked with. The training was phenomenal, and quite exceeded my expectations. As a Licensed Mental Health Clinician working in a day treatment high school in San Diego, I learned that I could apply to have the SOSF work with the students in weekly yoga classes....for free! I jumped on the opportunity to bring a great resource to the at-risk, high-need population that I worked with. Many of the students were up against challenges such as mental illness, severe behavior issues, gang pressures, trauma, learning disabilities, teen parenting, violent neighborhoods, and chronic socioeconomic stressors.

The Sean O'Shea Foundation ended up working with the students at the school for not just 7 weeks, but several years, and in the process changed a student body and the staff supervising them with their positive message of health, resilience, and taking control over one's circumstances through strength of mind and body. Through the discipline of yoga and nutrition classes, students learned skills to move through life, and in doing so also were surprised to see significant amounts of emotional and physical pain lift. They now had a skill and a hobby to feel good about and mentors that believed in them and demonstrated kind and gentle consistency in their words and actions. Through this process the students developed mental and physical strength and resilience. The staff that participated (myself included) benefited from weight loss, calmer work days, and a nice camaraderie with one another and the students participating.

In addition to being a licensed marriage and family therapist, I am also a facilitator of mind-body skills groups developed by the Center for Mind-Body Medicine, and the SOSF message strengthened and reinforced the group curriculum I was teaching to the students, and led to a synergistic process in their journey of self-care. The story of the tragic loss of Sean O'Shea, a man of many virtues, is one the students can identify with, as the lives of many of them have been peppered with loss. They get to experience something beautiful that grew out of the O'Shea family's loss, and develop hope for their own beauty to grow out of their own losses. I can't say enough about how authentic, inspiring, effective, and professional the Sean O'Shea Foundation Non-Profit Yoga Programs are. It is a direct correlation to the staff who run them. I am proud to be serving on the board of directors of this amazing foundation.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

When you see first hand how rival gang members are in the same room doing yoga with each other, acting calm, it is such a transformative experience. I think this is what makes the Sean O'Shea Foundation stand out from other non-profits. Yoga, perhaps more so than team sports, instills discipline, prevents violence, improves GPA, reduces drop-out rates, improves employability, reduces health care costs. Add to that the nutrition education that the Foundation teaches to at-risk youth and the program literally has the potential to reduce health care costs, gang violence and boost employment rates...all this adds up to enormous benefits for dozens of communities and schools around San Diego County that benefit from the Sean O'Shea Foundation.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Apply for more grants!

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

In Southern California, as in much of the rest of the country, yoga has become over the last decade a popular way to exercise. Perhaps more so here than anywhere else, though, yoga is a part of the community and not merely a form of exercise. When I learned of the Sean O'Shea Foundation's work introducing yoga to at-risk and low-income middle and high-school students, I quickly became enthralled at how many kids it has reached in such a short time. Middle school and high school can be terrifying places for kids, especially those that come from broken families or communities also plagued by drugs and violence. Perhaps no other activity can strengthen a vulnerable child's resolve and boost confidence like yoga. The Sean O'Shea Foundation is my non-profit of choice. A friend of mine, a popular yoga teacher, organized a donation yoga class on the weekend, a great, fun way to raise funds for a charity that I truly believe, will save many children from the bleakness that affect all low-income communities.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

talking to kids who have gone through the program who have told me that the Foundation has tremendously helped them deal with stress!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Hire more teachers and grow it even more quickly.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am a resource coordinator for a small school district with a high free/reduced lunch population. Our district has been the lucky recipients of scholarships from the Sean O'Shea Foundation for the last few years. This program is amazing! They work with us to fit the needs of our students. The student population is 17% Native American and they do not have access to many extra curricular activities. My own son has been able to participate and he loves yoga so much now! One of the best programs I have ever worked with!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been a donor of this wonderful Foundation for five years now and I believe in what it stands for wholeheartedly. The Foundation has made a difference in the lives of the children and it teaches the children the fundamentals of yoga, in addition to learning good nutrition and practices. The children will learn life long skills and these skills will make a difference in their lives for the future.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Good Morning. I am the counselor at our K-8 Charter School, this is our 3rd year working with the Sean O'Shea Foundation and I am so happy to say that our kids LOVE yoga! Our middle school boys show up and participate with pride. I have witnessed so much peaceful growth in our students that receive yoga training. I strongly believe this helps to empower the boys as well as spread the peaceful perspective to other students on campus. I look forward to continuing to work with the foundation next year and in the years to come!

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

The O'Shea Foundation has been great to Los Altos High School. First, they did a class with our counselors, and some students. When the counselors schedule filled up, and could not keep the class, the Football Team has got involved. We have 60 kids a week being taught yoga by the Foundation. They have been spectacular. The kids have been really receptive to the teachings, and the instructors have gone above and beyond to be great teachers. I never imagined yoga could capture the minds of 60 teenage meat-heads, and the O'Shea Foundation has done for our program. They have provided mats, and everything the kids need to be successful, Without the foundation, maybe one or two of these kids would have the opportunity to experience on their own.

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Rating: 5 stars  

The Sean OShea Foundation continues to grow under the leadership of Gloria OShea and with the help of all the wonderful volunteers who share their talents with the foundation. The foundation continues to serve the community in so many different ways and is always looking for new areas to help the community

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

The Sean OShea Foundation continues to grow under the leadership of Gloria OShea and with the help of all the wonderful volunteers who share their talents with the foundation. The foundation continues to serve the community in so many different ways and is always looking for new areas to help the community

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I am honored to be a part of the Sean O’Shea Foundation. This organization has given me a voice to express my knowledge and passion of the benefits of mindfulness, mindfulness in the way we move and fuel our bodies. I experience true joy working so close with the youth in my community. Teaching yoga and nutrition classes, I see first hand the advantages these skills offer. After returning to teach a nutrition class for a second semester, I asked the students if they made any “mindful decisions” over the break. One 5th grade girl responded “I changed my eating habits and am eating more fruits and vegetables rather than chips”. I could tell she looked brighter and healthier. In yoga classes, I see them develop awareness with their bodies and breath. It brings happiness to my heart seeing the impact this foundation is giving to the next generations. The Sean O’Shea foundation teaches holistic, practical and meaningful ways for young people to stay connected with themselves and each other.

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

While taking my Yoga teacher training I was introduced to the Sean O'Shea Foundation and was truly moved by the inspirational story. Later down the road after finishing schooling to become a Registered Dietician I reconnected with the Gloria O'Shea and felt extremely grateful for the opportunity to be a board member and share my experience and knowledge of nutrition and mindfulness. This foundation is extraordinary and brings kids the benefit of becoming aware of themselves in a new positive light.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been working with the Sean Shea Foundation for about three years now. I am impressed by all of their programs and the impact they have had on our youth. I have been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to teach yoga for this non-profit, in a few different settings. I have seen first-hand the incredible effects of yoga in the classroom and in a hospital setting. Yoga and nutrition in a school setting is so important. This program gives children the tools to make healthy and mindful decisions about their mental and physical well being. Also, having previous experience as an elementary school teacher, I know the need for this type of life tool. It may be difficult for us to grasp what these children are going through, however we can guide them in a positive direction through the teachings of nutrition and yoga. I have also been fortunate enough to volunteer with the program “Yoga 4 Kids with Cancer”. As a yoga teacher and volunteer, I have been able to help so many ill children, as well as, have an impact on their families. Yoga in the hospital setting is very important. It helps to calm and soothe suffering children that may be in pain, experiencing discomfort, or may be scared of the unknown. Also, this program helps the families that are tired, worried and stressed immensely. They are given the opportunity to get in some well-needed stretching or breath work. These calming tools can then be practiced, individually and together as a family, any time needed. Furthermore, guardians and parents of these children have expressed their gratitude for the program and the ability to learn some calming techniques that can be used in the hospital setting and when they go home with other family members.

I strongly believe in the yoga programs offered by the Sean O’Shea Foundation. I feel so lucky and proud to be part of these amazing programs with fantastic, generous and smart people. I look forward to continuously seeing the amazing results that all of their programs have to offer.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

assist more with fundraising, so we could expand the program and reach more children.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I began my involvement with the Sean O’Shea Foundation as a volunteer shortly after I met Gloria during my Yoga certification at Mira Costa College in 2010. She shared her passion and the story of her son, Sean O’Shea, and even from this early moment, I felt connected to Sean and his compassion for others in his yogic path helping and supporting at-risk children. Since then I taught a few classes and specifically always enjoy relating the story of the mother with her three younger children who came to the last class of a seven week free program to her school and saw her 8 and 10 year old boys in savasana, completely calm. The jaw drop by her was priceless as these boys started out poking and goofing around early in the program. Since then, I’ve been involved as a board member supporting the continued enhancement and growth of the programs with so many testimonials of how our program impacted the whole social dynamics of so many children and young adults. Our children in this program are transformed into by learning about nutrition and yoga and “The Optimist Creed” that Sean taught in his yogic path. Our mission says it all: “To empower youth through yoga, nutrition and optimistic teachings that help to develop life skills that can enable youth to take responsibility for their life, develop respect for themselves and others, and have confidence in their own potential.”

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

continue to work with the skills of an incredible board to enhance and expand the program to youths beyond those we reach today.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

Was this review helpful? 
1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

The Sean O'Shea foundation provides for free a seven week yoga and nutrition program to at risk children 8-18 years old. Over the last five years, since the foundation was started after an overwhelming response from yogis after Sean O'Shea died tragically in a freak car accident, they have helped thousands of children find the reward of how yoga and good nutrition can help them feel better. One specific experience was watching two brothers, 8 and 10, who started out with an incredible amount of energy having difficulty keeping their hands to themselves. At the last session, the parents were invited in during savasana and their mother saw them laying completely still. Her jaw dropped as she had never seen them so calm. Of course, they were the same two who asked that we bring the program back to their school.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful?