College of Health Sciences Hosts Screening of Township Documentary for Mandela Day

The College of Health Sciences, in association with the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) and the directors of the Township Yogi documentary film hosted a premier screening of the production for Mandela Day.

The documentary was produced to raise awareness about the Township Yogi Project, which offers free yoga classes to people living in townships and empowers those who are unemployed with free yoga teacher training. The documentary is produced and narrated by the renowned American producer and actor, Blair Underwood, who is an ambassador for the Township Yogi Project.

Academic Leader at the College of Health Sciences, Dr Suvira Ramlall, says the goal of the event was to showcase the inspirational work done by the Township Yogi Project as well as launch the UKZN Campus Yogi Project – a university programme aimed at creating a culture of holistic development and promoting the wellbeing of students and staff.

Ramlall said the health of university students was a matter of growing concern. ‘Stress, anxiety, depression, suicide and substance abuse are taking their toll on young adults with serious social and economic consequences as well as a negative impact on tertiary education throughput. Good health – encompassing physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual wellbeing – is essential for academic success and has to be part of the university curriculum.’

Reflecting on the significance of Mandela Day, Ramlall said embracing yoga on this day is a fitting commemoration. ‘Mandela once famously said: “A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination”. Yoga is one practice that can help develop both a good head and a good heart.’

The Campus Yogi Project has been designed in collaboration with UKZN staff and students with the support and guidance of the Township Yogi team. The project will embrace and promote the practice of Hatha yoga, meditation and breathing exercises.

•    Follow: to watch the film trailer.

A percentage of profits from the film will be donated to the Township Yogi Project.