We Are Yoga Warriors

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization promoting the benefits of yoga and meditation to help relieve stress and some symptoms of cancer and its associated treatments. In addition, we provide yoga classes for survivors and caregivers and look for meaningful ways to help cancer survivors. For example, we provide housing for cancer survivors and caregivers who need a place to stay when they’re in town for life-saving treatment at local hospitals and cancer treatment facilities. We have also given Baptist Health Foundation a grant to buy medical equipment capable of removing colon cancer less invasively.   

FOX 16 News Anchor Donna Terrell’s daughter, Queah (pronounced: Quaya) was first diagnosed with colon cancer in her 20s. She had no known family history and was misdiagnosed twice before doctors discovered the late-stage tumor. After gaining awareness of her diagnosis, she set out to educate others, especially young people, about the warning signs. One of the hospitals where she received treatments offered free yoga classes to survivors which is how she was introduced to the practice and its benefits.

Oncologists say yoga and meditation are useful in helping to relieve stress and some of the symptoms of cancer and its associated treatments. They also say it can help alleviate symptoms from chronic diseases including arthritis, heart disease, lupus and diabetes. Continued yoga practice can lead to increased relaxation and physical fitness.

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Signs of colon cancer

There are numerous symptoms someone can exhibit that would indicate colon cancer, including this list from the American Cancer Society:

  • A change in bowel habits, such as diarrhea, constipation, or narrowing of the stool, that lasts for more than a few days
  • A feeling that you need to have a bowel movement that is not relieved by having one
  • Rectal bleeding with bright red blood
  • Blood in the stool, which might make it look dark brown or black
  • Cramping or abdominal (belly) pain
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Losing weight without trying

News anchor Donna Terrell is a woman on a mission

As an Emmy Award-winning journalist at FOX 16 News in Little Rock, anchor Donna Terrell knows first-hand that the most powerful and impactful stories are those that evoke emotion drawn from a deep, personal perspective that can put a relatable face on the subject or topic at hand.

That’s why Terrell is on a mission to use her own experience to promote cancer awareness and advocate on behalf of the health benefits of yoga for oncology patients by sharing the story of the daughter she lost to colon cancer in 2011.

“She wanted me to use her as an example,” Terrell said of her daughter Queah, who was only 27 when she was diagnosed.

“She believed it was imperative to warn young people that colon cancer was not only a disease for older people,” Terrell added. “Even during some of her sickest moments, Queah would tell people – young and old – not to be afraid to get screened.”

Inspired by her daughter’s courageous battle, Terrell, who also lost her mother to cancer, created a special event in 2014 centered on yoga and dedicated to raising funds and awareness for the disease.

“Queah began doing yoga during her illness because it made her feel better,” says Terrell.  “Yoga Warriors promotes the practice and brings awareness of early detection for colon and other cancers.”

Since its inception, Donna Terrell’s Yoga Warriors Fighting Colon Cancer has helped provide liquid nutritional supplements for local cancer patients.

“All patients can benefit from liquid nutritional supplements, but for some, it’s a lifesaver,” explains Terrell.  “Thankfully, Yoga Warriors has been able to make it available at no cost for those patients needing financial assistance during their cancer journey.”

Yoga Warriors celebrates its seventh year in 2020.

“Oncology research indicates that yoga can sometimes be helpful in relieving some of the stress and symptoms associated with some cancers and treatment,” says Terrell.

According to Terrell, recent reports suggest that introducing common tenets of yoga – such as meditation, relaxation and concentration – not only can improve the overall mood, health and well-being of patients, but it can also help alleviate symptoms of such chronic diseases as arthritis, heart disease, lupus, diabetes.

“We’re all in this fight together,” says Terrell.  “And, in my heart, I know Queah would be thrilled that we’re making a difference.”

Yoga Warriors is a not-for-profit organization.  

For more information, visit yogawarriors.org.

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