It’s taken a while to get here but Duncan is finally part of a five-year province-wide research project aiming to use yoga to help heal women and children from trauma caused by violence.
The Reaching Out With Yoga project is funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada. The hope is that by focusing on physical sensations through yoga, participants will feel less anxiety and more control over common trauma symptoms like insomnia, panic attacks and more.
“This project is a huge step towards our goal of removing the barriers of access to yoga for our most vulnerable community members,” says Delanie Dyck, Yoga Outreach’s executive director.
The program already runs in 21 transition houses in B.C. Now three years in, the partners are seeing positive feedback.
“Violence from an intimate partner is now widely understood as having the potential to cause trauma. The practice of yoga, and in particular trauma-informed yoga, is increasingly being recognized as a valuable practice in supporting the recovery of those who have experienced such violence,” says Joanne Baker, executive director, B.C. Society of Transition Houses.
Having expanded into Duncan, Yoga Outreach is currently seeking volunteer instructors to teach classes at a transition house operated by Cowichan Women Against Violence Society.
To volunteer, qualified yoga teachers must complete the Yoga Outreach Core Training TM, an 18-hour course that empowers instructors to plan trauma-informed classes for individuals facing multiple barriers, including domestic violence, PTSD, addictions, and mental health challenges.
Training is set to occur Nov. 16-18 and those seeking to attend can register at www.yogaoutreach.com