Celebrate International Day of Yoga by joining Yoga Gives to St. Jude Kids

June 14, 2021

Virtual class to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital on June 19

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (June 14, 2021) –In celebration of International Yoga Day, join yogis Gopi Kallayil, Sarah Thomas Pilcher and Mariah Gibson for a free virtual class called Yoga Gives to St. Jude Kids at 9 a.m. CT on Saturday, June 19,via the St. Jude YouTube channel.

Participants are encouraged to register, donate and fundraise $100 by June 30 to receive a St. Jude branded yoga mat strap in recognition of raising awareness and support for kids with childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.®

Thanks to generous donors, events like this help ensure families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.

“We’re thankful to Gopi, Sarah and Mariah and our friends at Google for bringing together yoga and meditation practitioners from around the world for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” said Richard C. Shadyac Jr., President and CEO of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude. “Their support allows St. Jude to continue its pursuit of new treatments and discoveries for childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases.”

As part of its integrative medicine program, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital offers holistic therapies, including yoga, to its patients. Patients of all ages participate in yoga practices at St. Jude and can experience specific benefits from yoga, including restorative postures for pain relief, improved range of motion, balance, strength and endurance. Yoga also is a great activity for the entire patient family’s health and wellness. It can be adapted for all skill levels, and bonds patient families who have something other than medical diagnoses to talk about with one another.

Meet the yogis

Gopi, Chief Evangelist of Digital Transformation at Google, author and yogi, will kick off the event. He founded one of the largest yoga programs in the world – Yoglers, the yoga program for Googlers, which offers more than 250 weekly classes for every experience level. Gopi studied in a classical yoga tradition at the Sivananda Ashram when he was growing up in India. He has taught and spoken at the Yoga Journal conference, Wanderlust, Wisdom 2.0, and Burning Man. Gopi teaches Hatha, meditation and some educational classes on Glo.

Arkansas native and Lululemon ambassador Sarah began practicing yoga practically in the womb, with her mother as her first teacher. As Sarah grew her practice, she began teaching and developed “a heart to serve,” volunteering at nearly a dozen organizations to make yoga more accessible for all. A ballerina when she was younger, Sarah now loves to stay active by playing tennis and walking in addition to her yoga practice. She has traveled to India to study the origins of yoga and aims to bring that knowledge to her students to help them deepen their practices.

For New Jersey resident Mariah, a lifetime love of dance eventually led her down the path to the yoga studio. After performing with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and at Walt Disney World Resorts, she transitioned her dance experience and furthered her love of movement to a yoga practice. Mariah aims to offer transformative experiences that strengthen her students mentally and physically while helping them gain confidence in themselves and their potential.

As Black yogis, Sarah and Mariah believe in the importance of using the practice of yoga to become one’s best self as well as improving health equity for people of color. Their passion to serve others through their practice mirrors the diversity, equity and inclusion practices of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, which treats children regardless of their race, religion or ability to pay.


About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.®It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since the hospital opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. Visit St. Jude Inspireto discover powerful St. Jude stories of hope, strength, love and kindness. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on TwitterInstagram and TikTok, and subscribing to its cc.

Media Contact:

Jennifer Godwin, ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
(901) 275-5596