It’s with heavy hearts we announce our second fundraiser for our small family business, Yoga State. I have learned through the camaraderie and healing I have witnessed in our students and teachers everyday since opening, that oftentimes a business that has been loved grows to belong to its community just as much as it does to the person who founded it. At this time, I think it’s best to be as transparent as possible with you. If Yoga State doesn’t collect at least $32,000 by January 18th, we will be forced to permanently close both of our locations due to bankruptcy.
This is a post I never thought I would have to write. Yoga State has been part of the Lansing community since 2006. We have offered yoga and spin classes to thousands of people providing them with tools to improve their mental, emotional, and physical health. We offer yoga and spinning teacher training programs, which provide the skills for students of any age to learn a valuable trade while also helping others through their passion the same way it has helped them. Above all we offer a safe place through love, strength, and acceptance. The most common feedback we get about someone’s experience is that our studio saved their life.
The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating impact on Yoga State. We are legally prevented from opening our doors. Our landlord is not granting us rent forgiveness. We have applied for countless grants but are not seen as a priority by the donors. We have only been chosen for one grant for $2,500 since the beginning of the pandemic, which is only a fraction or one month’s expenses. We have overcome a variety of obstacles financially and personally over the years as a small business, but this is a unique circumstance we cannot rise above alone.
The future is looking brighter and we have built a plan to reopen. Unfortunately we can only execute this plan if we raise enough money. We are turning to our community and asking you to please help us to continue to provide these valuable resources and keep our studio that we’ve poured our hearts into everyday since 2006. $32,000 seems like an overwhelming goal until it is broken down. If 320 people donated $100 we can do it. If 640 people donated $50 we can do it. These are extremely hard times for everyone and as a studio, we want to be here for you throughout it and when it’s over.
I’ve always liked the phrase “I'd give anything if it meant everything”
If giving up your money would take away from you seeing out your own dream for your future I ask that you hold on to it. But if you’re able to help, please consider donating to save Yoga State because it would mean everything to us.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: How long have you been closed?
A: Since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we are charged rent every month for both locations even though the studio hasn’t been able to conduct business since March.
Q: Why don’t you open?
A: The states orders have made it illegal for group fitness classes to meet with the exception of a few weeks earlier this fall. We chose not to open for those weeks because we can only have a fraction of our clientele in attendance. It would be more expensive to run heat and electricity for 6 people than it would be to not hold the class at all. Opening with these regulations would cause us to lose more money.
Q: What about grants? Isn’t the bank just handing out free money?
A: We have applied for every grant we have found. We have only received one for $2,500 during this entire pandemic. Unfortunately a lot are scams, a lot of them are very specific to the type of small business and how it was set up financially/legally when it was originally founded, so we are not eligible. And some, they just pick you or they don’t. They haven’t picked us. It’s not what you think.
Q: Other yoga studios are open though?
A: According to the CDC’s regulations and laws put forth by the state of Michigan it is currently prohibited to host group fitness classes.
Q: What will the donations be used for?
A: Only to pay rent for the yoga studios.
Q: Don’t you feel bad for asking for money?
A: We have never asked for help before and honestly, we do feel guilty. But this is a space that means so much to so many people, it doesn’t seem fair to entertain closing without giving our community the opportunity to help.
- Katharine Merritt
- Kalyani Vangala Aggarwal
- James Peery
- Rob / Stephanie Jenneman
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