DAYA Mission and Vision: nourished by Sarahjoy Marsh
To deliver accessible yoga alternatives in the form of public and agency-based yoga classes, yoga therapy interventions for anxiety, depression and addiction, and adaptive yoga programs for those with medical conditions that require medically-sensitive yoga. We teach the tools that build each student’s essential life skills toolkit and that empower them to make a difference.
DAYA Foundation is on the front lines of service where yoga, social justice and consciousness intersect. DAYA provides yoga and mindfulness programs to inmates and officers, addicts and counselors, chronic pain patients and medical professionals.
At the heart of our most transformational project is our founder, Sarahjoy Marsh, who has been teaching yoga in prisons for over 20 years. Together with a team of highly trained yoga professionals, she teaches 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training Programs in prisons, training adults in custody to become yoga teachers on the inside.
Lessening violence and the overuse of segregation and isolation as a behavior management tool and reducing mental health episodes, prisons become places of recovery, personal and interpersonal development, and for adults in custody to discover all of the arts of yoga, including karma yoga, service to their community.
DAYA Yoga studio also provides public yoga classes and yoga + mindfulness trainings in Portland where all levels of students are welcome. From vinyasa yoga to restorative yoga to trauma-informed, inclusive, accessible, medically-sensitive yoga, DAYA community is a vibrant hub of yoga for the entire community. We uphold the principles and ethics of the yoga tradition and encourage all of our students to do the same. Self-study and self-inquiry are integral to freeing ourselves from the human conditioning that continues to catalyze oppression, marginalization, hatred, violence, anxiety, depression, addiction, and social injustice.
It is possible to for any one of us to be a part of the solution. Yet, we can’t only rely on our most courageous, impassioned leaders. We must, together, recognize our capacity to contribute to the continuation or the discontinuation of suffering.
Please join us in this revolution of consciousness.
May all beings be respected, kept safe from harm, and have access to the tools that enable their lives to thrive, and to be of service.
The DAYA Foundation vision is to:
Deliver Accessible Yoga Alternatives to those challenged by the financial constraints of living on disability, overwhelmed by medical bills or health care costs, or those for whom a household budget can not readily include the costs of “regular” yoga classes.
Deliver Accessible Yoga Alternatives to institutions, centers, organizations, or facilities that have the capacity to address the public health concerns of all of our community members. We partner with organizations to deliver these services to their community members. We’re particularly interested in those agencies that support the vulnerable, marginalized, isolated, or under-served members of our community.
Deliver Accessible Yoga Alternatives to those struggling with addiction, anxiety, or depression.
Deliver Accessible Yoga Alternatives by providing ongoing training for allied health professionals to study the arts of asana, pranayama, mindfulness, meditation and the psychology of yoga to incorporate into their existing professional practice. Being on the frontier of the field of yoga therapy, we will also endeavor to train qualified yoga teachers to integrate the tools of yoga therapy into their teaching or their private practice. Additionally, we’ll train laypersons who are interested in bringing yoga and yoga therapy to students via our outreach programs.
We see ourselves as participating on the front line of an ever-growing social justice movement: the movement toward a socially just community in which all members have access to the life tools that would enable them to thrive.
The DAYA Foundation is founded on these essential principles:
Yoga teaches fundamental life skills.
These life skills transform our mental and physical health.
These life skills make us better individuals, family members, and community members.
All members of our community deserve access to the life-enhancing practices of yoga.
All members of our community have something to teach us about life, human suffering, and human potential.
When community is created, healing happens, for it re-knits our experience of belonging.
If you would like to learn about becoming a member of our Annual Sponsorship Program to ensure the ongoing delivery of accessible yoga alternatives: