Cause for Concern


By Mary Bolster  |  

Seane Corn believes in karma yoga, the practice of serving others. That’s why she’s involved with YouthAIDS, a four-year-old charity dedicated to preventing the spread of AIDS, particularly among women and children in Africa and Asia. After getting behind the cause last August, Corn, a 35-year-old yoga instructor who lives in Los Angeles, came up with a fundraising project specifically designed for the yoga community. First she created the slogan “Off the Mat, Into the World,” then she worked with Gaiam, makers of yoga mats, clothing, and home furnishings, to produce the slogan on T-shirts.

From there, Corn spoke with folks at Yoga Works and persuaded them to prebuy T-shirts to sell in their studios and to donate studio space for YouthAIDS benefits in January and February. Simultaneously, Corn approached media companies (including Yoga Journal), asking for support to get the word out.

YouthAIDS has a formidable team behind it, including actor Ashley Judd, who is the global ambassador. Judd has been with the organization for almost three years now and regularly travels to Asia and Africa to meet with AIDS patients, to educate people and spread awareness about the disease, and to help remove the stigma of this illness.

With a budget of $120 million, YouthAIDS has established youth centers, opened testing sites, distributed educational materials, provided condoms, and spread the “ABC” message (A for Abstinence, B for Be faithful to one partner, C for use a Condom every time) in Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe.To get involved (sell T-shirts, host a fundraiser, organize a benefit party), call (202) 572-4625 or visit www.youthaids.org or www.gaiam.com.