The Conover + Gould team will be donating to eleven nonprofits in the spirit of giving back during the holiday season. During the month of December, each team member will be blogging about his or her chosen nonprofit. For her gift, Rebecca chose Yoga Activist.
I chose Yoga Activist, a nonprofit organization based in DC that seeks to promote yoga outreach around the country. Many studies have indicated that yoga has wonderful health benefits, from reducing blood pressure and facilitating weight loss to combatting anxiety. Practicing regularly can be empowering, and doing so with others builds community.
Yet, yoga classes often do not serve diverse populations. The cost and location of yoga classes sometimes means that many cannot take advantage of the benefits that yoga offers. Yoga Activist was founded as a way to combat this inequality by helping to make yoga – and its benefits – accessible to more people, with special emphasis on underserved communities.
Yoga Activist offers by-donation teacher trainings to individuals who are interested in volunteering to teach in these communities. They curate diverse online educational resources for volunteer teachers that help them learn more about the specific needs their students may have. For example, those struggling with posttraumatic stress disorder may have different sensitivities than the homeless. Very young students in schools will have different mobility and attention spans than those in elderly housing facilities. Yoga Activist seeks to serve all of these communities and more. They also act as a liaison for social service organizations looking to introduce yoga into their programs.
I have the privilege of working for Yoga Activist’s sister organization, Yoga District. This separate but linked collective of studios shares many of Yoga Activist’s goals. They strive to meet people where they are, by opening neighborhood studios and offering affordable yoga with sliding scale payment options for those in need. Belonging to this community has been rewarding for me. I hope that this gift will make this experience possible for others.
To donate to this organization, you can click here.