Singer in search of some warriors

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An award-winning country singer is combining her talent at the microphone and on the yoga mat for a community-wide fundraiser this weekend.

Singer/songwriter and certified yoga instructor Tanya Ryan is inviting the public to participate in 75 minutes of stretching and strengthening before watching 45 minutes of her live acoustic music.

The fundraiser, called Warriors for Women, is being held at the Crescent Point Field House Oct. 12 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Ryan hopes it will be the largest indoor yoga and live music fundraiser in Alberta.

Money raised from the event will support Rowan House Emergency Shelter in High River.

“If you’ve never set food on a yoga mat before you are welcome to come to this class,” she said. “Just have an open mind and a good sense of humour and you’re good to go.”

Ryan was tasked with organizing a charity event as one of 12 Alberta artists competing in the Wild 95.3 Calgary radio station’s Project Wild competition. Project Wild contestants take part in an artist development boot camp, the Showcase Series and complete a series of career-enhancing challenges for a prize of either $100,953, $75,000 or $50,000. Winners will be announced Nov. 25.

Ryan has been a Rowan House volunteer and ambassador for three years due to her personal relationship with domestic violence and her admiration for the organization.

“There is a lot of effort put into empowerment and women’s safety and health,” Ryan said of the organization. “What they’re doing is really big and I think if we had more funds to give to them they would be able to do that much more.”

Rowan House also works on preventative education in schools and serves as an outreach for former residents, Ryan said.

“Once they’ve gone through the shelter and are trying to reintegrate into real life they are counseling these women,” she said. “They are setting them up for success.”

During her involvement with Rowan House, Ryan raised more than $10,000 for the non-profit organization through donating auction items, running social media campaigns and hosting a songwriters circle. She hopes to raise more than $10,000 this weekend and attract 500 people.

Sherrie Botten, executive director of the Rowan House Society, said she is excited about Ryan’s Warriors for Women fundraiser.

“This is a unique idea and it’s such a nice fit because there are so many people here that are supportive of Tanya and love her music and really like her as a yoga instructor,” she said.

Fundraisers cover the cost of basic needs for the women and children that utilize the service, she said.

“That’s over $100,000 a year because it is a family of 24 on any given day,” she said.

The cost to participate is a recommended $20 donation, although any donation is accepted.

To register go to eventbrite.com and enter Warriors for Women.

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