2020 Year In Review

2020 classes qi fest year in review Dec 24, 2020

2020 was a year like no other! Saying it was unprecedented is a bleak understatement. With the success of 2019 still fresh on our minds, we set our 2020 plans with much enthusiasm. The impact of COVID 19 changed many of our plans, presenting us with the challenge to adapt and address the moments as they occurred.

Deep Root set the intention to be the calm in the middle of the storm. We rooted in the consistency of our practices and rose to unseen opportunities for growth and development. We came up with innovative new ideas, all planned with much determination, to pivot quickly to online classes, events, and unique community free offerings, allowing us to achieve another successful year.

The global pandemic changed how everything was done, including how and where we met and trained. However, one thing that did not change was the work, and the resolve toward deepening our awareness and strengthening our connections.

We want to thank you, everyone, for letting us into your homes to continue or begin your practice.

2020 has been a very challenging time, felt by the entire world, and we appreciate your continued support of our efforts. We watched as you continued to grow and develop further than we could have even dreamed.

Below we reflect on the topmost impactful things we achieved during the year.

Featured Highlights

1. QI FEST 2020 Virtual

We took our annual QI FEST event online and had an extraordinary event. The QI FEST is a multi-day event featuring teachers from different Mind-Body-Spirit wellness disciplines. With an impressive lineup of presenters, canceling was not an option for us, and we took this fantastic event to new heights on our new learning platform.

In addition to the event, this is the first fully recorded version of the Qi Fest, and participants can revisit it. If you missed the Qi Fest 2020, you can relive the experience and purchase the magic of the event on-demand.

It amazed us how we were able to capture and transmit the spirit of the event online. The QI FEST was a clear example of how the right technology-focused with a human touch can impact people in a meaningful way.

Relive the Qi Fest


2. Career Wellness Program; Zen in Tech

In 2020 we created our first Career and Technology Wellness Program focused on called Zen In Tech. Zen In Tech is a series of live online six-week Master Classes called Zen Camps. Zen Camp consists of 2 weekly live classes anchored with mindfulness techniques, where students learn technologically in-demand subjects. Participants have access to class recordings, course materials, and community during and after the class's completion. Students have weekly assignments and relevant homework individually reviewed and checked by the certifying instructor.

Our pilot program featured eight students of color, over 50% of them women, and seven of whom completed the program and received program certification in the presence of the VP of the Trailblazer Community and Trailhead Evangelism at Salesforce. 

The next Zen Camp begins in February 2021. It is a one-of-a-kind guided interactive experience with resident expert Sheldon Callahan: a Tech Evangelist, former Salesforce Employee, three-time Dreamforce speaker, and Shaolin Master. 

2020 was an unprecedented event for the Deep Root in bringing mindfulness to the career field. Nearly 100% of the participants graduated from the program.

Learn about Zen In Tech

3. First Graduating Class of Zen in Tech

We were incredibly proud of the graduating class of Zen In Tech's first Zen Camp. We hand-selected each person for their tenacity and search for change and depth. Navigating the ins and outs of Salesforce and Trailhead is not easy. To graduate, the students went above and beyond expectations. From Weekly group training sessions, partner pairing, and acquiring merit badges, we know and can certify that our graduates have the competence and understanding of Salesforce Administration basics. Our graduates did the work and had the badges and knowledge to prove it!

4. Launch of MOVE: Spirit & Rhythm Dance Program

In 2020 Deep Root declared dance as a wellness practice and proudly launched this exciting new program celebrating the culturally rich traditions of the African Diaspora and Hawai'i. MOVE, headed by Shereel Washington, whose career and experience spans 40 years of training, performance, and choreography in a wide range of dance styles and traditions, including Pan African Genres and Hula.

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5. Online Communities

Shaolin Life and MOVE community

This year, one of our milestones was launching two online communities, Shaolin Life Community and the Move Community. We have been able to announcements, schedules, articles, and program and temple news and events. Thank you all for joining and extending the reach of our community. 

6. Student Enrichment

Shaolin Life Kung Fu Intensive

For existing Shaoling Students, we dove deep into making Kung Fu forms relevant for self-defense applications. This 3-hour intensive was our last onsite gathering and was a pivotal pillar in the participant's practice.

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7. Community Events

Qigong Intensive with Master Sheldon: Sacred Self care

After our first Qigong Intensive's success in 2019, we have reserved it as an annual event.


Deep Root had the honor of being invited to Blacks In Tech event called "Fresh" heald at the Twitter headquarter where we shared Master Sheldon shared Qigong, and Kelli Pilkinton of Open Lotus shared Meditation.

Open House: Qigong / Pan African Dance

Deep Root offered a free 3-week community series to encourage and inspire the community to stay healthy and to keep moving during a shelter in place. Over 100 people signed up and participated.


Sistah’s Aging with Elegance and Grace.

Master Sheldon and Shereel Washington tagged teamed to share Qigong and Pan African in this year's SAGE (Sistah's Aging with Elegance and Grace), an annual event that empowers women.

Qigong Community Wellness

Master Sheldon lead this warm workshop for a local BayArea community. Participants gave positive feedback on the impact of the event and the teachings.

Support Us.

The health and wellness of the community are of paramount importance to Deep Root. We strive to offer top-quality classes and events through our programs: Shaolin Life, MOVE: Spirit & Rhythm, and Zen in Tech. Our programs help people thrive and be the best they can be. It takes ALL OF US to be the community we want the world to be. 

Please partner with us by donating to any or all of the programs we offer. We've gotten this far with you and cant' imagine doing it without you. 


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