This is the theme and mantra of this collaboration between Team Next Generation Yoga and Africa Yoga Project. I spent the last year fundraising and raised over $8000 to make this trip happen. This week has been inspiring, emotional, exhausting, enriching and joyful. I worked hard to get here, but also feel so lucky that I get to do this. This work is beyond amazing. I’ve been connecting with people who live so differently then me but inside are truly the same.
It’s hard to put into words what is happening here. If you’ve seen my facebook posts, you’ve been able to see what an incredible experience this has been so far. Our goal was to come here to teach 80 Africa Yoga Project teachers how to bring yoga to the children they already teach. These teachers have already been trained by Baron Baptiste, but have never learned to formally teach children. They are already going into the informal settlements, prisons, orphanages and in homes to share the practice of yoga. And we’ve been fortunate enough to be able to see exactly what they are doing in some of these places.
We spent 2 days at a school in an informal settlement (the 2nd largest in the world). We connected with kids, played games, did yoga, gave hugs and helped to build 30 new desks for their school!
AYP brought supplies as well. You want to know where the money you donated went? This is some of it. These AYP teachers are incredible. I’ve gotten to know some of them so well through this last week and I’m amazed and inspired by their stories. The stories of where they came from and where they are now.
As part of team NGY and ambassadors to AYP, we’ve been given 4 rafiki’s (friends) to stay with us in our guest house, and go with us everywhere we go. Irene, Joyce, Patrick and James have become true friends. We have been able to connect in our team building meetings, on the van rides to and from all the different journeys we’ve been on and just sharing in meals together. Our team is also quite amazing. Everyone came from different places with different stories of how and why they are doing this. It’s been so much fun getting to know these extraordinary people.
This past week we’ve been able to take yoga classes from AYP teachers and the founder of AYP Paige Elenson. We’ve experienced the community class at the Shine Center which is truly community in every sense of the word. We’ve been to the homes of some of the teachers, to informal settlements, and were lucky enough to visit the Amboselli National Park and do a few game drives.
We visited a few Masai villages that are homes to some AYP teachers. We learned how little people need to survive and be happy and content.
Thank you all again for your support in getting me here. I hope to be able to send another update in a few days. Tomorrow we start the NGY teacher training in which I am assisting. I can’t wait!!