Y.O.G.A. for Youth NC Continues to Serve Survivors and Their Children
“I feel like a new person.” This was a comment from an 8-year-old Latina student after one of our yoga sessions. Y.O.G.A. for Youth NC has entered its fourth year of programming for mothers and children in the Latina Women’s Support Group run by the Durham Crisis Response Center, Durham’s only non-profit that supports victims of domestic and sexual violence through advocacy, education, shelter and support services. Twice a month, the mothers’ support group meets while their children gather for yoga class. Then, the children get to play and do art activities with volunteers while the mothers get their turn at yoga.
According to national statistics, 1 in 4 people experience domestic violence, and that figure may be higher in marginalized populations. In 2012, the Durham Crisis Response Center answered over 4,000 calls to the 24-hour crisis line; provided emergency shelter to 237 women & children (98 were turned away for lack of space); assisted 217 sexual assault victims and 749 victims of domestic violence; accompanied 135 survivors to the hospital for forensic and medical care after an assault; provided 1092 court units of assistance, & held 108 support group sessions. DCRC serves 35% African-American clients, 35% Caucasian, and 30% Spanish speaking or other ethnicity –indicating that DCRC serves a higher proportion of communities of color than is reflected by local community demographics.
Keval Kaur Khalsa, who has been the Lead Teacher for classes with DCRC, shares, “It has been a blessing and a privilege to share the yogic tools that have completely transformed my life with these courageous mothers and children who are living with levels of stress that I can only imagine.” One mother commented, “Yoga is the best way for me to relax and to find myself!”
Find out more about Domestic Violence Awareness Month