Fit Minds/Fit Bodies After-School Program
The New LIFE School – Bronx, New York
- Emerging Leader: Ayodele Saromi
- Grant Program: Emerging Leader
- Amount of Grant: $10,000
- Dates of Grant Term: April 2017 – April 2019
Ayodele Saromi, Office Administrator at the New LIFE School in the South Bronx, N.Y., is a teacher, mentor, and community health advocate all rolled into one. Since graduating from Lehman College, The City University of New York, Bronx, Ayo has held a variety of positions in human services, including enrollment coordinator, comprehensive care manager, athletic coach/behavioral therapist supervisor, and attendance teacher. One of his passions is teaching martial arts to children with Autism, and he strives to find innovative ways to reach students with special needs, fostering an interest in martial arts, improving students’ socialization skills through cooperative fitness activities, and teaching children how to eat healthy foods to improve their quality of life.
Fit Minds/Fit Bodies is an after-school program for high school students with special needs at New LIFE School. The program will serve 10 high school students, ages 13-19, teaching life skills, fitness through martial arts, and study skills. The program will consist of two 90-minute learning blocks focused on improving academic skills, physical fitness, and life skills to achieve higher rates of homework compliance and improved participation in group learning activities. Participants will also acquire appropriate social skills such as assertiveness and negotiation, to resist negative peer pressure each student faces every day.