Conference Day Workshop


  • Elmeka Henderson, Primary Counselor

    Bishop Mackenzie International School
    Elmeka Henderson is a licensed educational psychologist, mindfulness educator, and currently the primary school counselor at Bishop Mackenzie International School in Lilongwe, Malawi. She brings both great passion and expertise to her teaching. She has been practicing mindfulness for over a decade and has spent the last 6 years teaching mindfulness and incorporating contemplative pedagogy in a variety of settings including private coaching, parent workshops, and classrooms both internationally and within the United States.
  • Mariella Vittetoe Castillo, Secondary Counsellor

    Bishop Mackenzie International School
    Mariella Vittetoe Castillo is a psychologist and family therapist with a specialism in children and adolescents in the field of mental health. She provides counselling utilising the systemic thinking model, where the individual, school, and family all play a major role, ensuring a holistic and integrated approach to the management of psychological or emotional issues. She is currently the secondary counsellor at Bishop Mackenzie International School in Lilongwe, Malawi.

Everyone is Welcome: Creating Inclusive Environments in International Schools in Africa

This session seeks to create a space where teachers, counselors, and administrators can learn applicable strategies to better support their students through inclusive methods and language and cultural competence.

As educators, we are charged with ensuring the protection of the health, wellbeing and human rights of the children under our care. Some of our students arrive at school having experienced unfathomable traumas and we are in a unique position to not only observe and track a student’s wellbeing but also create an environment for them to thrive.

During this session, we will examine what a safe classroom looks like and what we can do to contribute to the wellbeing of our students; we will allow space for participants to share experiences and gain insight or applicable solutions, and we will discuss specifically how to support LGBTQ students in Africa – both publicly and privately – when many countries have or are developing strict anti-LGBTQ laws.

Learning Objectives

  • To highlight the importance of creating safe learning environments in order for students To thrive
  • To examine our own biases and the ways we show up in our classrooms
  • To gain strategies on how we can adopt inclusive language, support LGBTQ students, and normalize cultural differences among students and staff
  • To open the discussion for teachers To share experiences and find ways To apply the knowledge gained in their schools

Target Audience

Teachers, Counselors, Administration

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