ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) — News 4 is watching out for your mental health, helping you to relieve stress during this difficult time.

We know health and wellness can be expensive—and that makes it even more challenging when money is tight for many.

One yoga studio in north St. Louis is working to make it accessible to everybody. The Collective STL offers donation-based classes with a goal of bringing health and wellness to people and communities that may normally not have access.

“We love our city, we love our people in our city and we want to do our part to bring health to our city,” co-founder Terry Harris told News 4.

The studio has become even more meaningful amid the pandemic and the fight for racial justice. They’re offering yoga classes outside, so people can stay socially distant, yet still connect with their community.

Angela O’Neal-Washington has been practicing yoga at the Collective STL for two years. She got emotional when asked how the organization has impacted her life.

“I can tell that yoga has stabilized me,” she said. “It has caused me to be able to have so much control of self and that’s one thing I believe in, self-love, self-care and it has taught me to be able to love myself.”

O’Neal-Washington said the Collective STL has taught her how to breathe—a priceless skill during this stressful time.

“You do what you can do, eventually you’ll get better,” O’Neal-Washington said. “I’m impressed with myself and what I can do now.”

Harris said it doesn’t matter if you’re black, if you’re white or if you can even touch your toes. He said all you have to do is be able to breathe and share a believe that everyone should have access to wellness.

“I often say that the Collective is a love story and I think anyone who has ever been to one of our classes will feel that and say that as well,” Harris said.

Currently, the Collective STL is offering outdoor yoga classes at 9:30 a.m. on Saturdays. They also just announced a new partnership with the Gateway Arch Foundation.

Harris said they are launching a “JUST BREATHE” series under the arch. It’s a four-week wellness program designed for families in St. Louis. He said there will be yoga, meditation, journaling, arts and crafts, healthy eating and more.

You can call or visit the Collective STL’s website to learn more.

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