Awareness. Acceptance. Action. A Message of Solidarity from VYP
A Message to our Veterans Yoga Project Community
Veterans Yoga Project exists to help our communities transform trauma into growth. Amidst the traumas that many of us are living through, our hearts are heavy and we want to serve. Fortunately, our veteran communities have shown us how to be resilient in the face of adversity and how to unite for a mission greater than any one individual. At Veterans Yoga Project, our mission is to support recovery and resilience among all of our diverse veterans and active-duty service members, families, and communities. Veterans Yoga Project unwaveringly supports the Black community and all efforts to eliminate systemic racism and inequality. Veterans Yoga Project commits to being an anti-racist organization that strives for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
A note about our message, from VYP Executive Director, Dr. Dan Libby:
I have been doing a lot of learning and a lot of reflecting these past few weeks about the current struggles for racial justice that so many are fighting for. I have been reaching out to our veterans, teachers, and volunteers and listening. More than just expressing solidarity with a statement today that is forgotten tomorrow, I want VYP to be an ongoing part of the solution to these societal challenges. Some of you have reached out asked about our position on these current events and why we have not released a statement of support yet. Please don’t mistake our slower timing for a lack of care or honest commitment to the cause of justice and racial equality. We have been focusing on doing the hard work of having the hard conversations that these times call for. We have been using the tools of yoga to increase our Awareness of the issues, increase our Acceptance of these issues and our reactions to them, and to make a plan of Action moving forward.
We don’t have all the answers yet, but we are working on concrete steps to actualize our commitment towards diversity, equity and inclusion. We are kicking around ideas that including efforts to recruit from underrepresented communities, to create pertinent learning opportunities for our teachers, and to establishment a scholarship fund for yoga teachers from underrepresented communities. What do you think? What can VYP do to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion? Please email me with your thoughts, comments and ideas. I will share them with the Veterans Yoga Project Board of Directors and Executive Team and we will consider them in the actions we take moving forward.
In the meantime, I do know that practicing the tools of breathing, meditation, mindful movement, guided rest, and gratitude can help us all treat each other a little better. Practice with us live or on your own.
As always, I am deeply grateful for your support.