from one to many: africa yoga project

Paige Elenson, Executive Director of Africa Yoga Project shares with us what AYP is all about and how you can get involved.

My name is Paige Elenson, and I am the Executive Director of a charity I co-founded with Baron Baptiste called Africa Yoga Project.  It sounds like such an important title, when really I am just a girl, now mom, who fell in love with the power and transformation of yoga and wanted to share it with the world.  I remember stumbling into my first class with my teacher, Baron Baptiste. I was a teenager who wanted to attend a retreat in Mexico and had NO idea that yoga was way more than a series of poses. It was then that I realized I wanted to share this, yoga, with the world.

Africa Yoga Project was born following Kenya’s post-election violence in 2007.  We use the power of yoga to support economic development and alleviation of poverty by creating a local market for yoga.  At AYP we train young leaders and empower them to share yoga - in fact, we have just completed our very first 200 hour training program in Nairobi, Kenya where we had over 150 participants from all over the world.  Moses, Catherine and Billy were instrumental in conducting and facilitating the 200 hour training and are the 3 most senior teachers, having just completed Baptiste Level 3 training in Tulum, Mexico.  The tools they gained at this training were shared so powerfully with all the teachers at AYP and the training.  I am so excited to share the video of their journey with you!

I have seen many things in my short life, but the one thing that I have seen over and over is the transformative power of yoga.  If I could share one message with everyone that views this video or reads this post it is that the cliche of “together we can make a difference" is true.  You don’t have to build a school to make a difference, you can make a difference right where your feet are NOW!  Whether you are in Nairobi, Kenya or Vancouver, Canada - we all want to be seen, we all yearn for community and we all need one another.  So today, when you roll out your mat at your local studio, or perhaps wander into a studio you have never been before using your Om Finder app (which is amazing by the way & you can find our studio on it!) - introduce yourself, say hello and welcome someone into your life that hasn’t been there before.  Be the spark of togetherness - let’s together create a world for one another, where we all have enough, where we all share and we all change the planet...together.

Learn more about Africa Yoga Project here. What are you doing today to connect and share with the world around you?

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Awesome… just plain awesome :)

Comment by Paul Van Wijk — April 22, 2013 @ 9:37 am


Thanks guys for the inspiring work.

I first came across AYP on FB and got very interested in learning Yoga. Thus i sent you a message as well as to one of your members ( Margaret Njeri) but no reply yet.

Comment by Peninah Githinji — April 22, 2013 @ 10:48 am

South Africa needs this, specifically Soweto, Alexandra and Thembisa. We need spiritual healing, peace and we need something we can all do together, so we may forgive ourselves and each other.

Comment by Lerato — April 22, 2013 @ 11:28 am

Thanks for the inspiration and all you do for our country, world, universe and planet! I am in continuous awe! With so much love and gratitude!

Comment by Marcella — April 22, 2013 @ 2:33 pm

Being a part of that week in Tulum was such a gift and watching this video was like reliving the experience with Kathryn, Moses and Billy. Thanks for all that you all are doing to bring peace to the world. Heartfelt love.

Comment by nancy — April 23, 2013 @ 1:38 pm

As a Kenyan and eager yogi, it made me very happy to read this! :) I would love to make a trip back home and witness this.

Comment by Joan — April 26, 2013 @ 11:43 am

This is amazing and very emotional for me. I wish there was a way I could help or even part-take, my background is Ugandan and I know that all of Africa would benefit from everything yoga has to offer.

Comment by Stella Naggenda — April 29, 2013 @ 10:52 am

Wow. If people ever had a cognitive dissonance regarding this company, its adherence for Ayn Rand and how the three culminate into a “feel good about feeling bad” post… well this is it.

I say this after all of 12 minutes of research. I’d rather run in saggy old pants than give your company money.

Comment by lizz — May 10, 2013 @ 12:33 am

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