Millie Weke leading African children in a yoga class.

When you walk through the doors of Africa Yoga Project’s Shine Center studio in Nairobi, Kenya, it truly feels like coming home: high fives, hugs and a genuine welcome into a community that wants you to live as big as they do. This is the community that Paige Elenson, co-founder of Africa Yoga Project (AYP) has created, along with international yoga leader and lululemon global yoga ambassador Baron Baptiste.

Over the years, many of our stores have supported AYP with grants, yoga mats and product. This year, AYP became our first Here to Be international partner, and we took our partnership to the next level with a $50,000 grant and 500 yoga mats. These funds have supported curriculum development for the AYP Academy, which provides life and job skills to their yoga teacher training graduates.

Elenson is a resourceful social entrepreneur who followed her heart and intuition, moving overseas to build one of the world’s most successful service organizations. She’d be the first to tell you that she certainly hasn’t done it alone. The Baptiste teaching philosophy enables people to fulfill their purpose of making a difference for themselves and others, and uses a “train the trainer” model of teaching. As a student of Baptiste herself, Elenson and team have built a movement that now reaches across 13 countries in Africa. This approach to training has built a powerful community of global well-being leaders who are living proof that yoga can change the world. 

Can yoga be a tool for social change? Watch this short film to find out how Baptiste yoga is being used to create jobs, empower youth, and create well-being leaders in and from Africa.