Irvington Teacher Empowers Children in Underserved African Community

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While school was out for the summer, Dows Lane Elementary School first-grade teacher Laurel Warager spent two weeks in Kenya educating children in underserved communities through literacy and health fitness programs.

Warager, who serves as an education specialist on the board of the nonprofit organization Move to Empower (M2E), created health literacy curriculums for the women and children the organization serves. During her trip to Kenya, she was one of the volunteers who provided the children with curriculums that increased their awareness of the importance of movement through art, language and physical education.

“I am very proud of the work that M2E is doing around the world and feel so fortunate to be a member of the board,” Warager said. “The children were beautiful, warm and welcoming, and the teachers were dedicated and very brave.”

During one of the workshops, Warager encouraged the young students to practice good posture by balancing bean bags on their heads. She also facilitated the coordination of Move to Empower with another nonprofit organization, Days for Girls, which seeks to enable young girls to manage their monthly needs through innovative and sustainable solutions.

“It is critical to shatter cultural stigmas and to keep young girls from missing, on average, 500 school days,” Warager added.

During her trip, Warager was instrumental in the training and licensing of four local community representatives in Kenya who will keep the organization’s mission going in four schools in the Kibera settlement, which is the third largest slum in the world.

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