If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve been desperately seeking a way to help children and teens navigate this challenging phase of life in an increasingly difficult world. You, like us, want so badly for every young girl and boy to have confidence, resilience, self-respect, a voice. They’re surrounded by confusing, often hurtful messages that can erode their self-worth and lead to all the things no child should have to experience… anxiety, bullying, self-harm, and worse. They need tools for finding their way, and they need adults to guide them.
But how do you give them those tools? How do you find the right words for dozens of unique kids from different backgrounds? It’s heart wrenching to watch the lightness of youth become burdened with hurt and confusion… we yearn to help, yet often aren’t sure how to do it.
Enter SoulBook. This is a deceptively simple project we’ve developed at Brave Living over many years of retreats, events, and online classes with thousands of people of all ages worldwide. Anyone can make a SoulBook; it involves simple cutting and pasting of words and images, which we provide. Contained within the materials are several pages of words and sentences that every soul needs to hear—but perhaps hasn’t in a long time, or maybe ever.
When a person reads through the handout pages and picks out the words and sentences that stir their heart, something magical happens. The act of claiming those words and pasting them down is shockingly powerful.
This project will change the trajectory of a child or teen’s life for the better. All that’s missing is you. You can hold a SoulBook event for kids in your school or community.
Your role as a facilitator is simple, but critically important. We’ll walk you through every step and provide all the materials you need—word and sentence packets, sturdy blank books, a colorful booklet of images and words, and a free instruction manual. You can order or download different SoulBook versions for all ages, including adults (teachers and parents need this soulwork, too). We’ve refined this process to make it as simple and accessible as possible—and we would love to talk to you if you need any help.
Read through this page, and if you’re feeling called to bring this work to the kids in your sphere of influence, please heed that call. We are so excited to join you in your endeavors to serve the most vulnerable and invaluable among us—the kids.
Sincerely, The Brave Living Team
“I want to remember that it’s okay to feel sad sometimes.”
“I want to remember that I have a voice, I have ideas, I have thoughts, and I have a right to them just like everyone does. I can write them down, tell someone I trust, and even stand up for myself when I’m being shut down. My ideas and thoughts matter.”
“I always want to remember that it’s never okay for someone to hurt me.”
“Sometimes I forget to run like the wind and swing on the swings and feel free.”
A "SoulBook" is a powerful and simple cut & paste project full of meaningful images and powerful words our hearts & minds may know intuitively, but often forget. It started as a project for women, but the movement has quickly grown to include materials tailor-made for men, teens, and children as well.
Why would you want to host a SoulBook gathering? Because of the tremendous impact that this creative expression has had on humans of all ages.
It’s an ingeniously simple project that requires only cutting and pasting and can be made from inexpensive and accessible materials so that anyone can participate.
A SoulBook can be as simple as cutting and pasting the words, or you can make a SoulBook into a full-on art project, complete with painting, drawing, doodling, collaging, or any other creative expression.
The most important part of each person's SoulBook is the messages they choose for themselves, but we also encourage adding images, photos and any other meaningful thing to it that is available.
In late 2017, Tara and Rick Steele of Roundtop, Texas, hosted a SoulBook gathering at their home where they facilitated a SoulBook project for several friends and family members of all ages. Tara filmed an incredibly touching video of Brayden, her 9-year-old son, reading some of the words he chose for his SoulBook.
What happened next was pretty magical. Brayden was so proud of his book that he brought it to school to show his friends and teacher--quite a stunning act of bravery for a 4th grader! Deeply moved, and excited at the impact this project could have on other students, teachers, and parents, his teacher contacted Tara about doing the project at the school for Brayden's whole class and their parents.
That moment was the beginning of this whole new school-focused branch of the SoulBook movement. You can see photos below of the first event Tara helped facilitate at Brayden's school . Today, events just like it (for students, parents, and teachers alike) are taking place in schools across the country. Brayden has enthusiastically agreed to be the ambassador for helping spread this movement far and wide... we can't wait to see where it goes next.
We hope you will make your school the site of the next SoulBook event--it will change the lives of everyone who participates.
1. Read through this page and watch the videos to familiarize yourself with the project.
Melody Ross is the co-founder of Brave Living (Brave Girls Club), and originally created SoulBook in 2011 as an addendum to Brave Living's core curriculum "Soul Restoration" (a course, available online or in person, which she hopes everyone in the world can take at least once).
In 2017, Brave Living launched the SoulBook Gathering movement--a way for anyone to host a SoulBook event. The SB School Program has grown as a branch of that movement.
You can learn more about Melody and some of her incredible story in this popular blog post she authored.