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The Empowered Lounge is helping children and their families reach success in Hampton Roads

Now, with the opening of a new office in Virginia Beach, the group's impact is growing stronger, too.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — With the recent opening of an office in Virginia Beach, outreach expanded for The Empowered Lounge.

"It's to help empower and shift the youth in our community," elementary school teacher Ebony Shannell said.

She started the organization three years ago to help students reach success.

"Children, they get bored, and they forget what they learned," Shannell said. 

"Parents are becoming extremely busy, especially working day and night. And they don't have the time, the extra time on their hands to help their children within the home."

"We are able to create hands-on experiments, so children are able to learn the information and retain the information," Shannell said.

The Empowered Lounge teaches children through a character known as 'The Brainiac', who Shannell said helps make learning fun.

In addition to educational events, the organization offers other programs and services that are for-profit or nonprofit (through The Empowered Lounge Foundation). But they're not just for children.

"We also have the Parent Involvement Association, the P.I.A.," Shannell said.

"They can help do community service... Even if they come in and spend a couple hours and help lead... it's going to shift their mindset in their home to actually start helping their children more, too."

The Empowered Lounge also promotes cultural acceptance in the community.

"We need to know who our neighbors are," Shannell said. "We need to know their background, and they should be a part of our background, too."

The organization also provides practical education for parents.

"How to start a business," Shannell said. "How to buy a home."

"We just wanted to be an extra hand for the parents inside of the community," Shannell continued.

Now, with a new office, Shannell said she's ready to empower more children and families.

"Hands-on experiences, that's what we're going to create for the for-profit side," Shannell said. "And the nonprofit, we're going to just keep tackling the families and helping them as a whole."

The Empowered Lounge is hosting a Mad Scientist Experiment event on Saturday, April 29 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Tickets go on sale March 13 and can be purchased through the events page on the organization's website.

You can also follow The Empowered Lounge on Facebook and Instagram.

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