INVEST IN YOUR YOGA PRACTICE AND YOUR COMMUNITY: MAKE A GIFT TO IYDC!
Make a donation to your local Iyengar Yoga Collective to help us thrive as a cooperative and offer high quality, low-cost classes accessible to all. Donations will help us fulfill this purpose, expand our quality programming, and build community partnerships. If you have a few dollars, please give what you can. Thank you!
Use PayPal (sending as "personal") or mail a check to IYDC, 2321 Caniff, Detroit, MI 48212.
Current Solidarity Fund Projects
Becoming a Cooperative An alternative model of running a yoga studio is a cooperative structure, which allows for multiple people to spread the responsibilities of making sure the studio runs smoothly. Not only are there multiple folks on the owner’s circle, who share financial, administrative, etc. duties, but it is worth noting that since our cooperative began, many folks have opted to become members at the Jñana Circle, which means paying $100/year, or twice that of a general membership. (We also opened this up to Patreon plans that allow for paying monthly to alleviate the strain that a large lump sum might place on folks.) People gave because they could, and their financial contribution helps the community, while also giving them many member benefits. Members receive their own discounted price for classes, a t-shirt, and community gift class vouchers (which many chose to donate to those who were unable to pay), and access to video on-demand classes (unlisted YouTube playlists). Member benefits have grown even in pandemic: with no one using the studio’s props, active members have been able to borrow the studio’s props for home use. In non-pandemic times, members also have access to the IYDC lending library. From our evolution into a cooperative structure, we have seen folks happy to become members to support the structure and to continue paying it forward when they receive benefits.
Community Gift Program We believe that price should not be a barrier to attending class. Prior to the pandemic, we offered 3-4 Community Gift classes per week, meaning students could pay for class on a suggested sliding scale of $5-$25+ per visit. When we had to close our physical space due to the pandemic and all of our classes went online, we decided to make all of our classes Community Gift. Some students pay on the lower end of the scale, but some also pay on the higher end, which evens things out and pays it forward for future classes. Please see more about our Community Gift philosophy.
A new Community Gift project emerged during the pandemic. Gwi-Seok has shifted the IYDC teacher education program to an online format. Instead of meeting in person 4 times/year, we are now meeting monthly:
2-hour pedagogy study group
2-hour Yoga in Society/philosophy study group
3-hour asana and pranayama workshop
Participation in the teacher education events is based on a subscription of $50-$200/month. This format eliminates the need for travel and makes the teachings accessible to all. IYDC BIPOC paid apprentices receive a 100% scholarship.
BIPOC Paid Apprentice Program In 2019, we launched our paid apprenticeship program for BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and other marginalized groups. The idea behind this is that most teacher training programs cost money, which is immediately prohibitive to those who can’t pay. Additionally, due to systemic racism, BIPOC may experience multiple daily stresses making yoga class less of a reality or priority ( jobs, childcare, transportation challenges….). This program attempts to remove some of the barriers many people from marginalized groups experience when trying to immerse themselves in the life path of Iyengar Yoga. We recognize the tremendous commitment of time and energy it requires to become a teacher of Iyengar Yoga. We also emphasize that learning to teach Iyengar Yoga cannot be accomplished in a single year, nor in 200-500 hours, but that it needs to be preceded by a steady, consistent study and practice, and developed over years, through mentorship, relationship, peer support, and community. We recognize that it is not actually possible to place a dollar value on these requirements. This program is an attempt to make the path of Iyengar Yoga teaching concrete and viable, for both the apprentices and IYDC. By paying BIPOC apprentices, there is not only accessibility, but an investment in the future of IYDC, our local communities, and Iyengar Yoga.
Got a Minute? Yoga Clinic Begun in Fall 2020, the Yoga Clinic pops up at a local farmer’s market where an IYDC teacher and apprentices hold a booth. They conduct brief interviews with members of the public as to their ailments, aches, pains, etc. and teach a few yoga poses to help ease those ailments. Partnering with an established and trusted community farmer’s market and meeting folks where they are brings yoga as a healing justice practice and a public good into the community. This service is offered free of charge (donations welcome) with the idea that payment, transportation to the studio, and other barriers to access are eliminated. We dispel the stereotype of yoga as a practice for young, fit, white people, and those with money, equipment, and cultural/social capital. This also spreads the knowledge of Iyengar Yoga and gives apprentices a broad hands-on experience of therapeutic strategies while building relations with our neighbors and community.
Yoga in Society Committee Yoga in Society is a way of getting more BIPOC voices shaping IYDC projects. Comprised of a couple of our apprentices and other members of the local and national community, members of Yoga in Society are asked to work 4-8 hours per month and attend a monthly meeting to give their voice to community happenings and issues. We recognize that BIPOC labor is often exploited and underappreciated, so we offer an honorarium to committee members who need the financial support.
Ahimsa in Action Committee Ahimsa in Action (AiA) came from a request by BIPOC teachers at IYDC for the white members of the studio community to take on more of the social justice work. AiA meets twice monthly to discuss readings, videos, podcasts, and other forms of anti-racist media and culture and provides a space for white-identifying people to learn, ask questions, reflect, and to hold each other accountable. AiA has been tasked with writing publicly about various issues as well as giving input to cooperative policies and public stances on inequities in order to share the burden put on BIPOC folks. Members also make a yearly concerted effort to fundraise on behalf of IYDC as a way of giving back to the studio for use of space, Zoom, etc.
Iyengar Yoga Detroit Collective - 2321 Caniff Avenue, Hamtramck, MI 48212 - 313.528 9493 Contact us! Copyright 2016 - All rights reserved