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Welcome to CorStone

Three months ago I traveled with Jerry Jampolsky, M.D., our founder, and Diane Cirincione, Ph.D., senior consultant, to attend the 20th anniversary celebration of Cecura, our sister center in Mexico City. We were amazed by what we saw. 
 
Over 800 volunteers attended from all over Mexico. We lost count of the people who shared with us about how they were applying our tools and support models to help children, families and communities deal with so many challenges — poverty, violence in schools, crime, HIV/AIDS, homelessness and other threats.

The growing impact of our work and the potential for its application in a wide array of situations and environments is the reason I became Executive Director here earlier this year.

It’s also the reason I am writing this blog.         

And, it is the reason we have changed our name.

Right now, the world is full of opportunities for our organization, our ideas, and our experience in helping people function competently under stress, deal with everyday challenges and extreme adversity, and work together peacefully and productively in challenging situations.

Over 33 years, our work has moved from cutting edge to mainstream. Our staff and volunteers have provided training and support to thousands of people from over 50 countries. Today, the fields of mental health, community health, conflict management and neuroscience have all validated much of what we have found to be true, which is namely this: that we, as human beings, may or may not be able to choose the particular events of our lives — but we can choose the attitude with which we experience and deal with those events. With training, support and practice, we have seen people make great strides in helping themselves and each other to face everyday difficulties, upsetting conflicts or major life crises in a more peaceful and compassionate manner.

The opportunities in front of us call out for a more sustainable model that reaches more individuals and communities in need around the world. We want to include other approaches that are synergistic to our history. We are confident that our focus now on an “emotional resilience” framework, viewed through an orientation based on Attitudinal Healing, will place us at the forefront of this work. 

Our peer support groups will continue to be available here at the CorStone Center in Sausalito, CA, for individuals in need.

At the same time, we are launching programs in U.S. K-12 schools to reinforce resiliency in children, youth and families.

Internationally, we plan to increase the availability of our trainings and services to low-income communities in developing countries, where ”low cost / high impact” psycho-social models such as ours have great potential.

In short, we are positioned to help more people in more places and more ways than we ever thought possible.

My goal is to help guide our growth into these areas in sustainable ways. It includes partnering with the practitioners, universities, foundations and other institutions. With them, we will lead the way in showing people everywhere how to acquire emotional wellness, how to recover from adversity, and how to just “get along.”

To best reflect the increasing breadth of what we do, we have changed our name to CorStone. Based on a Latin root that appears in many languages, it means a “strong foundation for the heart.” It incorporates all the practices of The International Center for Attitudinal Healing while adding the possibility for leadership in related fields as well.

In upcoming blogs, I plan to lay out more information about ways in which we will become a “thought leader” in these areas, while continuing to provide the heart-felt individual and community services that remains central to what we are.

I also plan to share a bit of my own story of why I’m so deeply committed to this work. Meanwhile I encourage you to check out the attached Powerpoint presentation, or read the Frequently Asked Questions posted on our website.

Please feel free to contact me with questions and ideas to discuss in this space. Together we will continue and enhance the excellent work so many people have done with such passion and love.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Steve

Steve Leventhal

Executive Director, CorStone

stevel@corstone.org

September 5th, 2008