I experienced a visit to an Elephant Tourism Business, I found it genuinely heartbreaking to see. Elephants were distressed, carrying heavy cages for tourists to ride and often controlled by a hit with a sharp metal hook that left the skin bleeding. Many had scars around their legs from shackles, after researching the horrendous physical and mental abuse of *Phaajan; which includes horrible physical and psychological abuse used to train and break an elephant. I knew I had to do something.
*Phaajan is condemned by animal welfare groups.
I googled Ethical elephant sanctuaries, and Elephant Nature Park (ENP) came up among the world’s top. I became involved in ENP and booked a trip. Once there, I was profoundly touched by what was being done to change elephants and many animals’ lives.
How to Support
I created The Ganesh Refresh Yoga classes, which is a donation-based class. These classes were initially a weekly live class held in Taupo. During COVID19 Lockdown, I continued these classes via the Ganesh Refresh Facebook Group. So that supporters could continue the yoga connection and support the Elephant Nature Park Programmes.
Over a 3 yr period, these classes have raised over 20,000 NZ dollars, with 100% donated to the park.
Your support and donations are tremendous, and I am so grateful for the funds received as are the wonderful founders of the Save Elephant Foundation.
Ganesh Refresh Group Yoga classes are live once a month on Friday at 7.15am, recordings are left and available anytime.
Mondays 10.15am at Nourish Yoga Studio, 429 Port Road, Whangamata.
Retreats | Ethical Tourism
I usually travel to ENP and visit the animals yearly. I have also taken supporters to experience ENP projects and be encouraged to spread the word about unethical tourism and what to do instead.
For more information on ENP, you can check out their website here. There is always a more ethical way to experience Tourism and places like ENP that provide experiences for people to see these majestic animals without causing them harm and distress! If you are interested in ethical tourism and our retreats, please let us know.
The Groups Name
The inspiration for Ganesh Refresh Yoga comes from the Elephant headed deity GANESHA…who is known to be the remover of obstacles and the lord of learning along with many other gifts.
With these classes, I wish that we can contribute to removing the obstacles and barriers for the highly endangered Asian Elephant and those that risk their lives being a voice for the voiceless. With hope, we can learn and share with others the plight of many captive animals, also practising the life-enhancing yin yoga.