My name is Ali Duncan and I am the founder, creator, and visionary of Urban Sanctuary. This all-inclusive and diverse yoga studio provides space for BIPOC teachers to provide healing and wellness to underrepresented students and communities. Since 2016, my studio has brought healing to marginalized communities who have continuously been excluded from healing modalities such as yoga, reiki, and meditation. My purpose is to continue implementing anti-racism practices into my studio and the greater collective—to create a true sense of belonging. We are expanding this learning with monthly educational meetings for teachers and offering race talks within our community and for others who desire to embody the work. Our focus on anti-racism work allows us to be vulnerable and to connect on a deeper level making our community safer, more aligned, and stronger.
As a Black woman business owner, I firmly believe that diversity and inclusivity are not just buzzwords, but values that must be actively practiced and promoted in all aspects of my organization. We denounce all forms of racism, discrimination, and prejudice, and we are committed to creating a safe, respectful, and equitable space for all our teachers and students.
I recognize that systemic racism is a pervasive problem that affects individuals and communities worldwide, and I acknowledge my experiences and my voice is my responsibility to be part of the solution. I am actively working to educate myself, those in our community, and our team at Urban Sanctuary on issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion, and to challenge biases and assumptions.
I understand that addressing racism requires more than just words and statements. That is why we are taking concrete actions to promote diversity and inclusivity in our hiring practices, marketing strategies, and community outreach efforts. We are committed to listening to the voices of our community to amplify their perspectives and experiences.
I believe everyone deserves to be treated with dignity, respect, and empathy, regardless of race, ethnicity, nationality, or other characteristics. I and my team stand in solidarity with all those who are fighting against racism and any other form of oppression, and I will remain dedicated to being an activist in the pursuit of a more just and equitable society.
CONNECT WITH ALI