After 15 years serving communities across South Florida and the country, Miami-based Connection Coalition (CoCo) and its founder Terri Cooper Space are announcing the organization’s inaugural Yoga Mala & Awards Gala on November 3rd at the Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. Proceeds from the day’s events will benefit CoCo and its mission to spread the healing power of yoga and other modalities to help heal physical and emotional trauma. Six partial scholarships will also be awarded to Chakraology’s Trauma and Chakras Training in Guatemala, Space’s chakra education program. The balance of the proceeds will go to fund local youth programs in schools, shelters, foster homes and rehabs.

The Yoga Mala will take place on the rooftop of the Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Traditionally, a yoga mala is a form of prayer where students repeat cycles of a mantra or yoga positions in divisors of 108, a sacred number in yoga and the number of beads in a mala. Ten of South Florida’s notable yoga teachers will each lead 10 sun salutes and Space will lead the final eight to a crowd of over two hundred yogis. Vendors including, I Love Yoga, Peace Heal Grow, Baladev Boutique, 305 Yoga, and more will be selling yoga apparel, accessories, handmade jewelry and more. Attendees can also enter a raffle to win prizes (to be announced).

The festivities continue at 6 p.m. for the Awards Gala at the Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. The night will feature a three-course dinner, live DJ, special presentations and honoree awards. This year’s Connection Award Honorees include Thema Campbell, Founder/President & CEO of Girl Power; Leslie Glickman, Founder of Yoga Journey; Jamie Levenshon, Director & Co-Founder of 100+ Women Who Care Miami-Dade; Valencia Gunder of Make The Homeless Smile; and Michelle Martinez Reyes, Chief Marketing Office for Greenspoon Marder LLP. Sponsors include Andrea Trowers Dermatology, Mark Ryan, Marissa Hollander, Chakraology, 305 Yoga and more.

“I found yoga at a critical time in my life and it has continued to heal me every day since,” expressed Connection Coalition Founder Terri Cooper Space. “Connection Coalition was created to share this incredibly healing practice with others who have suffered similar experiences. Connection is the cure.”

Cooper founded the organization in 2003 with the hopes of reaching at-risk youth, who had experienced similar adversities she faced during her childhood and early adulthood. Overcoming drug addiction and poverty, Cooper found solidarity through the healing benefits of yoga and meditation. More than a decade later, the organization has helped more than 15,000 children across 17 states in crisis centers, including, but not limited, to runaway youth shelters, rehab centers, and juvenile detention facilities.

To purchase tickets, visit their website here. The “Mala Only” tickets are $25, “Gala Only” tickets are $150 and “Mala & Gala” tickets are $165. Follow Connection Coalition on Facebook. Twitter and Instagram at @ConnectionCoalition.