Meditation Garden at Carter High School promotes wellness, provides support to Rialto students

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Photo RUSD: The Lions now have their space to rest, reflect and be well. Wednesday, Nov. 6 marked the grand opening of the Carter High Wellness Center Meditation Garden. RUSD leaders, students and guests filled the beautiful Mediterranean-themed space as the ceremonial ribbon was cut.
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After a year of development, Carter High School’s Meditation Garden opened to both students and staff on Wednesday, Nov. 6.

The Meditation Garden, an extension of its on-campus Wellness Center, gives students a space to clear thoughts, cope with life stresses and feel safe.

“When entering the Meditation Garden, first you have to walk in through the Wellness Center. Inside it’s a very calm environment, there’s no fluorescent lighting, and it’s nicely painted. It brings your anxiousness down. When entering the garden, you open the door and hear the fountain right away,” said Principal Greg Anderson.

Photo RUSD: Carter High Principal Dr. Gregory Anderson, was among the students who took the opportunity to meditate after the garden’s official opening. Over the past three years, the Wellness Center has provided support to students with both low and high levels of stress, and the Meditation Garden is an expansion that will allow more students to utilize the various wellness services.

“There are trees all around and even the bark scent and nature of the Meditation Garden is filled with serenity. It brings your anxiousness level down naturally. When a student walks to the garden it feels as if they are not even at school,” continued Anderson.

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Once inside the garden area, students and staff have the opportunity to participate in breathing exercises, yoga, meditations or even to simply read a book.

“The Wellness Center on campus gives students a wide range of support. The Meditation Garden gives us an opportunity to work with kids in a way that allows us to be more proactive, rather than reactive. Giving students the opportunity to do yoga, meditate, and keep their minds sharp…it’s a great addition to our school,” Anderson said.

The new addition, was brought forth and came to fruition with the hard work and diligence of Grounds Maintenance Supervisor Brian Montez.

“The high school’s Wellness Center has been operating for three years now. The Meditation Garden was in development for about a year and we’re proud to offer this type of space and support to the students and staff at Rialto High School,” said Montez.

Montez went on to share that not only students are benefitting from the newly added space, but teachers are, too.

“We have staff members and teachers that like to sit on the benches in the garden and just read. It’s really a place where you can be one with nature and your thoughts. It is a place where students and staff can feel they have someone to listen to them, let go of their worries and let go of the technologies for a moment,” continued Montez.

In the near future Montez says all Rialto schools – high Schools, middle Schools, and elementary Schools – will be implementing a similar Wellness Center on their campuses. “The Wellness Center and the Meditation Garden has been well received by our district Superintendent Dr. Cuauhtémoc Avila. In the near future, we will be implementing appropriate wellness assistance to all of our students in the district. We’re excited to see what’s to come,” concluded Montez.

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