Help Us Keep Gentle Yoga at HappyTree!

“I find Gentle yoga to be such a positive, uplifting experience. Sometimes, I feel like a totally different person after yoga class. I may have come there tired, anxious or stressed and after yoga I feel happy and relaxed.”

– Cancer patient and Gentle Yoga student

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Since 2007, I’ve had the privilege of teaching yoga to cancer patients. Beginning at the Montreal General and The Royal Victoria Hospitals, I volunteered under Cedars CanSupport twice a week, guiding patients through gentle stretches, deep breathing and guided relaxation to soothe their nerves and calm their minds prior to chemotherapy.

The classes were so well received that in 2008, CanSupport and my yoga studio, HappyTree, launched a partnership to offer gentle yoga free of charge for cancer patients and survivors.

In May 2016, CanSupport sadly informed us that due to reorganizational issues associated with their amalgamation into the new McGill University Health Centre, it was no longer part of their mandate to sponsor the classes and our funding would be cut as of June 1st, 2016.

While we were all sad to receive this news, I’ve been touched by the outpouring of support through both written letters and testimonials from my gentle yoga students. Not only have they shared their stories with me personally, they have also been willing to share them publicly on CBC News and CTV News.

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“Since I have been regularly attending Gentle yoga classes at HappyTree, I no longer take any pain medications, I sleep well and the mobility of my arm has increased tremendously.”

– Cancer patient and Gentle Yoga student

It is with their encouragement that I have launched a GoFundMe campaign to keep the classes going.

With your help, we hope to continue offering free gentle yoga to a community of people who really need it – many of whom could not afford it otherwise. Your donation and the simple act of sharing this story with your friends and family will go a long way in helping us to reach our goal.

With sincere and heartfelt appreciation,

Melanie Richards

Founder & Director, HappyTree Yoga Studio

“HappyTree is an extraordinary place: I start to relax as soon as I open its doors and walk up the stairs. It is the singularly most positive, supportive and empowering environment I have ever been in.” 

 

– Cancer patient and Gentle Yoga student

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