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A Message from Collen Burke
Thank you for taking the time to explore some of the great things (bringing yoga to ALL!) we are doing through our outreach program.

As we stand on the edge of this new journey, bringing the means for self care and healing to the community, there is a great feeling of hope. Hope and excited anticipation of what could be if compassion was a more prominent motivator in our society. The Community Yoga Outreach Program (CYOP) has an intention to place as many qualified volunteer yoga teachers in as many organizations that serve the community as possible. We also dream of an environment where different types of healing professionals are available to all, where we can teach each other different methods to re-establish a sense of well being in individuals and the society as a whole. As teachers we intend to help guide individuals to feelings of personal strength, to the dignity that is found in health.

Our community needs help. We believe that the practice of yoga can help us to create an environment in our bodies and minds in which personal transformations are possible. The popularity of this ancient practice has been growing quickly in the United States over the past 40 years as students have learned how to reap the benefits of a dedicated yoga practice. Many have gained the awareness that they can actually control their emotional states by dialing down the body's aggressive responses to desires and fears using breathing techniques and meditation. However, this opportunity to learn is not available to all as costs of classes and transportation are prohibitive to most, especially in these devastating economic times. Just when we need yoga practice the most, it can seem elusive as we allow the stressers of hard times to take us over. At Yoga 4 Peace, we have a collective belief that yoga should be available to all, and especially to those who find themselves in need of help navigating these times.

The Yoga 4 Peace studio in downriver Detroit is a safe oasis, a peaceful and loving space which makes it easy for students to forget outside stresses and to connect with themselves for the time they are in class. And all are welcome, regardless of their ability to pay. However, it's time now to bust out of the studio walls and take the loving space within us to the community that will not or simply cannot come to us. That is what our outreach program will make happen.

Please take the time to read over our questionnaires; one is for interested volunteer teachers, another for organizations interested in our services, and a third for those who are able to donate to our cause. You will also find information about our ongoing mat and prop drive. These donations make it possible for our volunteer teachers to create a more therapeutic space on-site. We are open to all questions and comments and sincerely look forward to a future partnership with you.

Colleen
Director, Community Yoga Outreach Project
Colleen@y4peace.org