Paige Elenson

Ashoka Fellow
Fellow Since 2013


This profile was prepared when Paige Elenson was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2013.
The New Idea
Through Africa Yoga Project (AYP), Paige demonstrates how young people, deemed unemployable in the current job market, can be empowered to create employment for themselves and others. AYP trains young, disadvantaged Kenyans to become professional yoga teachers by actively developing the market for their skills, including identifying and creating new market opportunities. At the same time, the model cultivates a culture of inclusion and community service, and makes the health and wellness benefits of yoga, a practice previously a luxury for wealthy Africans, accessible to low- and middle-income communities.

AYP’s program is generating interest across the continent and internationally, setting the organization to expand to several countries over the next five years. Furthermore, the replicable model is already demonstrating the potential to increase job opportunities in other markets and industries. Organizations working on mental health in Kenya have approached Paige about adapting her model for their field.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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