Yoga Alliance Foundation: A Look Back and our New Normal

Last Updated: December 10, 2021

Dear Community,

We believe in yoga’s ability to bring people together and elevate our universal well-being. We also believe in a global yoga community representative of all—where everyone can see and find themselves in yoga and wellness spaces that support every unique lived experience and need.

In reflecting on the past two years, the serious impacts of the worldwide health crisis, ongoing social injustices, and shift in the professional yoga landscape have left many living in a “new normal” that feels anything but normal. During this time, the Yoga Alliance Foundation has been working hand in hand with yoga educators and students, community donors, and socially conscious organizations to respond to the yoga community’s most timely and urgent needs.

Today, we celebrate your generosity, energy, and innovative resilience. Thanks to your support and commitment, so many teachers in the yoga community were able to navigate this challenging time with the support they needed—thank you.

You helped make the following possible:

Emergency Relief Fund (ERF)

In May 2020,the Foundation partnered with the global non-profit Ivy Child International to introduce an Emergency Relief Fund for yoga professionals experiencing financial hardship due to the impacts of COVID-19. This fund was open to both Yoga Alliance members and the broader yoga community worldwide. In 2020 and 2021, $500,000 in total were distributed in COVID-19 relief around the world.

India COVID-19 Relief

In honor of International Day of Yoga 2021, the Foundation created a matching donation campaign that contributed to on-the-ground efforts helping India in COVID-19 recovery. With the help of the Yoga Alliance community, $32,000 went to three organizations supporting India as the country experienced a massive Delta variant spike.

Awakening Yoga Spaces

Awakening Yoga Spaces (AYS) is a collaborative coalition of yoga and wellness communities committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the yoga world and making yoga teacher trainings more accessible to members of the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community facing financial barriers. This year, the Foundation was honored to award a $25,000 grant supporting 16 scholarships for BIPOC trainees in yoga teacher and yoga therapy programs offered through participating coalition studios.

Breathe for Justice—Yoga and Mindfulness Youth Training

Research shows that yoga instruction and mindfulness practices can promote young adults' physical and emotional health, while supporting their academic success. Armed with this knowledge, the Foundation donated $100,000 to Breathe for Justice—a Youth Yoga and Mindfulness Teacher Training Program led by Ivy Child International. The program supports 100 scholarships for Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) students to complete a Registered Yoga School (RYS) 200-hour yoga and mindfulness teacher training, including a year-long apprenticeship and mentor program.

Teaching for Equity

Teaching for Equity (TFE) is an ongoing initiative supporting yoga teachers worldwide who serve for little or no pay in communities experiencing marginalization. Through their vital work, TFE Teachers create meaningful, lasting, and positive impacts by bringing their communities together and fostering individual and communal health.

TFE teachers collectively received $22,000, which supported both their classes and compensation for any promotional appearances made on behalf of the program. Since its inaugural launch in 2021, the program has expanded in both funds and number of participants, welcoming 50 individuals to its second cohort in 2022.

The Teaching for Equity program is funded and directed by the Yoga Alliance Foundation with Ivy Child International and Synergy Yoga as implementing partners.

Learn More About Each Program

All of the above became possible through this community’s support. And still, there is so much more to be done.

Coming up, you will receive an email from us detailing an important new initiative called Eka Well-Being Services. This program will offer one year of free holistic mental health and well-being support for yoga professionals facing barriers to these important services. Stay tuned for more details, including why this program was created and how it will work.

Again, thank you for all you have done and continue to do in bettering our world through yoga. We look forward to creating more positive change and greater equity in yoga, together.

Contribute to the Foundation

The Yoga Alliance Foundation team is pleased to connect with you.

For more support, please email

Yoga Alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)(6). Yoga Alliance Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3). This website refers to the two organizations as "Yoga Alliance." Copyright 2024 Yoga Alliance. Yoga Alliance, the Yoga Alliance logo, RYS, RYT, and YACEP are registered marks with the USPTO and other jurisdictions.

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