Mia St. John, 3-time boxing champion and founder of El Saber es Poder, has developed an innovative, holistic youth development program that directly addresses the most serious health and social challenges facing Latino youth and their families. Chronic physical health issues that greatly impact Latino youth include diabetes, asthma, obesity, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and mental health issues. Social and cultural issues most impacting Latino youth are healthy peer relationships, life skills, opportunities for cultural expression, problem solving and communication skills and self-care. Spiritual issues include values clarification, purpose and meaning in their lives.
Mia brings her expertise in fitness, nutrition and mental toughness as shown in her recent book, The Knockout Workout, to a select group of at risk youth. The El Saber Es Poder, Latino Youth Wellness Program, provides a planned and structured individual and group program of experiences and hands-on activities in the areas of:
1. Physical Development (Nutrition, Physical Fitness and Weight Management);
2. Social Development (Relationships, Socialization, Life Skills, Consumerism and Career Pathways);
3. Emotional Development (Self-Awareness, Basic Trust, Mental Wellness, Commitment to Self/Others/Success, Affirmative Inquiry, and Therapeutic Counseling);
4. Intellectual Development (Education, Insight and Expression Journaling); and
5. Spiritual Development (Values Clarification, Meditation, and Mantras).
Using boxing as her tool, Mia has created a unique approach to educate and
Mia says, “Boxing is simply a metaphor for life. If you get knocked down, you get back up. Always look your opponent in the eye and face your fears. If you feel shy and scared in that ring, act as if, act as if you are strong and fearless because as the Buddha says, ‘What I think I become.’ Never give up, but know when to take another route. And for as many times as we fail in life, we will also succeed. Our defeats are just as important as our victories.”
The goal of El Saber Es Poder is--not to teach kids to be world boxing
champions--but instead--to be world champions of life.