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RYYO Yogathon – The Power of Community!

July 7, 2009 by Jessica Earle Meadows

On June 6th and 7th, Ottawa’s yoga community came together for the first time in a spirit of offering to give back to its youth-in-need. Seven participating studios, with nine locations throughout the Ottawa area, effortlessly said “yes” to Radha Yoga Youth Outreach (RYYO)’s request to participate in our inaugural weekend fundraiser.  Read on for more about the event as well as information on a job opportunity with RYYO…

“Supporting the future of our youth and the yoga community in Ottawa through a program that is authentically inspiring and effective,  is hardly questionable!” says Tara Porter, Manager of the Rama Lotus Yoga Centre. “We are thrilled to support and sponsor this city-wide initiative that unites more than just Yogis across Ottawa.”

Peter Elmas, manager of Santosha Yoga, shared: “it’s a beautiful way to see the studios come together for a cause we can all support,” his sentiment expressing the power of unification that comes from transcending individual needs and wants.

Not only was the weekend a financial success for RYYO, raising $4,000.00 in its first year, it was a fantastic way of promoting our program to a wider community who might not otherwise know about us. While we have a lot of visibility in the not-for-profit youth services sector in Ottawa, we need to inform the mainstream yoga community about what we do. The Yogathon was an invaluable tool to “name what we do” in the community, and allow the ripple effect of that power to unfold in the future. One yoga student turned out to be the director for the Status of Women in Ottawa, offering information about future grant opportunities!

The weekend ended with an intimate community kirtan, offered in service by a local devotional yogi group called the Bhakti Connection – a fitting title for the heart and devotion that brought together 10 RYYO volunteers and 9 yoga locations, and raised $4,000 in the name of serving youth.


RYYO Outreach Coordinator Position Update: Fall 2009

Radha Yoga Youth Outreach is hiring a new Outreach Coordinator for an 8.5 month contract, starting mid-September, 2009. The candidate must have completed the YDC and Hatha Yoga Teacher Training at Yasodhara Ashram, and have an interest in working with youth of diverse needs. Our program is in transition, so there is flexibility for the unique skills of the chosen candidate to come forward and shape the future direction of RYYO. We have extended our application deadline to Monday, July 20th, 2009. Please contact: for an updated job posting, to ask questions, or to submit your application.

~ Jessica Earle-Meadows, RYYO Program Coordinator


P.S. Rogers Ottawa invited Jessica and outreach teacher Michael McCarthy to talk about RYYO and the Yogathon on their local cable show Daytime Ottawa!  It seems that some computers have had trouble viewing the video on the RYYO blog. If you are using a windows computer you can watch the interview on the Rogers website.


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