LGBTQ Activist, Motivational Speaker and Transition Coach
As a nineteen year old transgender teen, I can tell you things in life don’t always go as planned. I grew up in the suburbs of upstate New York in an Upper-Middle class family that seemed to have it all. Underneath was nothing short of dysfunction, just like every other family out there. I was struggling to hold it together and decided to break that “picture perfect” image. I stood true to my authentic self and told my mother I no longer wanted to be her daughter, I wanted to be her son. Little did I know that letting down one truth would unveil so many others…
During the time of my gender transition, my mother confesses how she’s unhappy in her marriage after cheating on my father. My father falls ill and passes away in the blink of an eye, just a week before my sixteenth birthday. My twin sister shuts down and resorts to her eating disordered ways. I’m severely depressed, anxious, and am actively trying to lose weight not knowing anyway way out my binge eating lifestyle. Next thing I know our childhood home forecloses. I leave for college on a near full scholarship and drop out...the list goes on. I share these intimate details of my life because there was a time where I felt shame about being emotional and vulnerable. There’s nothing wrong with sharing the moments in her life that bring us to our lowest because those moments are ultimately what helps us in determining our highest. I want to shed light in corners of darkness and help those ring in their purpose for this thing we call life.
As a youth presenter on behalf of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), LGBTQ transition coach, and Heroic Humans Ambassador I share my story to help others see their authentic selves, even in the darkest of moments.
Nathalia Moraes Freitas
Los Angeles, California
Body Positive Advocate and Motivational Speaker
I’m from Brazil and I live in Los Angeles, CA. I was born with a condition called Congenital Melanocytic Nevus, or just Nevus. It left a large birthmark that covered 40% of the right side of my face, plus thousands of satellites all over my body. From nine months to 13 years old, I had nine surgeries to remove my facial Nevus. Being different was always a big deal especially in my childhood and I would be noticed very easily. At school kids were very cruel and used to call me monster and ugly face making my childhood very difficult - until I realized that I was born like that and it was not a choice, this is a condition. Also, image is not everything— it’s just the way I look— it does not define me.
When I decided to embrace myself and love the way I am, everything became easier.
As a Heroic Humans Ambassador, I would love to share my story and hear others stories hoping that everyone can see themselves as beautiful as I see them. Even being born with a giant facial birthmark and having scars from surgeries didn’t stop me from learning how to love myself and I embrace the way I look. If I can do it, anyone can. Today, I am a body positive advocate and I give motivational speeches against bullying and how to improve self-esteem. I have a background in marketing, love to cook and dancing is my therapy.
Yoga & Mindfulness
"Yoga hasn’t always been my passion. There were a lot of other things before I found my true calling. I was always drawn to the community of things. I played sports. I enjoyed volunteering. I was always found on the go, always moving; it was hard to find me still at any time. When I injured my knee and was forced to slow down, I decided to give yoga (another) try. It’d been a few years of dabbling, but I finally started realizing that you could still find community, support, love - not only with others in a yoga setting, but with yourself also.
It took me a long time to realize the chameleon that I’d become. I didn’t really know what I wanted (in a lot of ways, that hasn’t changed!) and often would just float around interacting on such a surface level, just doing and saying what I thought was expected of me. People pleaser at it’s finest. Once I started to practice, and listen to that authentic voice inside of myself, I knew that others needed to feel this too. And not just adults, but children too, and people of all abilities. We all plug ourselves in. We are constantly told what to do, where to be, how to think, and who to be. When we give ourselves just a moment even, to tap into our authentic selves, we can start to make decisions for our physical, mental, and emotional well-being in a conscious way.
In a lot of ways, teaching yoga isn’t only for my students - I need these lessons too. I still struggle with over-working myself. I still struggle with the approval of others. I still struggle to find my peace. My intention behind building Calmunity Yoga is to help others to find their community - in others and themselves. To show up authentically, unapologetically as themselves. We all need space to reflect, notice, and just be. I share the practice with little beings fresh into this world, as well as old souls that have been around the sun a few times. It doesn’t matter what age you are, what your physical or mental abilities are, there is at least a piece of this practice that is for YOU. Allow yourself to play, explore, and experience just being.
Being a part of the Heroic Humans family is an amazing opportunity, one I am so grateful for. The community that it creates, the movement that is reaching and growing throughout the globe, gives us all the experience to connect with people in real and authentic ways. To show up as ourselves. To share, to learn, and to be."
My name is Taisia Scobeleva. Me and my parents moved to Canada from Moldova when I was 5 years old. A few years later, my father became abusive & I began to develop mental health issues. I was just starting high school when I was taken away from my family & put into foster care. I moved from home to home, ended up with several substance addictions, ended up homeless, and was lured into human trafficking right here in the city of Toronto. I was also diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder at the age of 20, even though I had been showing symptoms since I was 11 or 12.
Borderline Personality Disorder is a serious mental illness with a mortality rate of 10%. It is the only mental illness with self-harm as a diagnostic criterion, with over 80% of sufferers reporting engaging in self-harm at some point. It is a very, very difficult mental illness to live with. Not just that, but it is also extremely stigmatized. Support for BPD is also hard to come across.
Since my diagnosis, I have graduated college with a certificate in Criminal Psychology & Behaviour, and I am currently in university working on a Bachelor of Health Studies. I am also a graduate from the York Entrepreneurial Development Institute (YEDI), founder/executive director of The Borderline Project, a speak/facilitator for Aura Freedom International (an anti-human trafficking organization), and a speaker for YouthSpeak Performance Charity.
There was a point in my life where everyone (including myself) didn’t think I’d make it past 18. I am so grateful to not only still be here, but to be thriving. I am so honoured to be a part of the Heroic Humans community & to be reclaiming my power as well as encouraging others to reclaim theirs. I think it’s incredibly important to celebrate ourselves and the people around us – we are so much stronger together.
Mental Health & Storytelling Ambassador
They say that those who enter into the helping professional field are often drawn to it given their own difficult life experiences and a passion to give back to others who find themselves in similar circumstances. I would be lying if I said this wasn’t true for me.
I know the impacts, both mentally and physically, from being a survivor of trauma. I know the pain of unbearable depression and hopelessness. I know the fear and terror of crippling anxiety. I know the feeling of being lost and alone. I know the sense of disconnection, from myself and others.
I also know that when we ignore our emotions, when we try to avoid feeling into our experiences, and when we quiet our voice, that we continue a lifelong pattern of suffering and disease. For years, I lived in this space of avoidance, and with that came unhealthy coping strategies such as substance use, self-harm, disordered eating, and self-sabotage. It took a few more big traumas and debilitating health conditions for me to finally get real, dive deep, and do the inner work necessary so that I could find more freedom and ease in my life.
As a Holistic Psychotherapist, Embodiment Coach, and Storyteller, I have worked with thousands of people in my practice and I am honoured and humbled to bare witness to their stories and to support them in discovering the freedom they deserve, so that they can arrive at a place where the pain they are experiencing is no longer controlling their lives. I am incredibly passionate about sharing stories and the truth about the human condition through my writing that is featured in various publications, and it brings me such joy to create life-changing and powerful healing experiences for people when they come on retreat with me to do the real deep work.
To be an Ambassador for Heroic Humans is an honour and privilege, and my mission is to help others get real, dive deep, and to own their story, because every story matters. And as the author, we get to write the next chapter.
My passion for learning to love our bodies as they are comes from a long story riddled with self-loathing to the point of self-harm, disordered eating, and inhibited living, which ultimately lead me to wonder if I should continue living. As my self-loathing stemmed from living in a body larger than society deemed to be desirable, I thought losing weight would give me the self-love I longed for. At the end of 2015 I found myself 40 pounds lighter, but the self-love and confidence I thought I would gain did not magically appear as I shrank.
It was at this point I decided my body was never the issue, it was the lies I believed about my body that were the problem. In this light, I began the challenging process of reworking my mind to see beauty in my body as it is.
At the beginning of 2018 I married my passions of practicing gratitude and body love by publishing a guided journal called The Body Love Book: A Daily Journey to Self-Love. As I am working on a MSc in Applied Positive Psychology, the research has convinced me that we have the power to retrain our brains to see good in our lives when that is what we focus on. I am grateful to have created a tool for myself and others to find the good in our bodies every day.
Being a part of the Heroic Humans community has been so special to me that being an ambassador is an honour! From the bottom of my toes to the top of my head, thank you for trusting my voice to speak into this community about body love and acceptance. My hopes are to start or continue the conversation of loving our bodies as they are, so we are able to free our mental space to discover our passions and make a meaningful impact on all of those we encounter.
New York City
Born and raised in one of the greatest cities in the world, New York City. My purpose in life is to empower others. I believe you should always work towards bettering yourself and providing a hand-up so others can do the same. Thankfully, growing up there were many strong influences in my life who provided me with the tools necessary to succeed and go after my goals. And now I want to do the same for others, teach the importance of good energy, affirmations, giving back, and love. I know many people lack access to high quality, inexpensive, consulting services; so I wanted to be able to provide high quality work to professionals.
My day job is as a strategic business transformation consultant, focused on financial services organizations. But my true passion lies in being a humanitarian. By volunteering every week as a Team Lead, at an organization called Minds Matter, I guide underprivileged high achieving students onto a path that establishes core professional principles, college preparatory skills, and ensures a successful summer program experience. The purpose is to make sure students are prepared with the necessary tools to be accepted into, as well as succeed in college. And in 2016 I founded De Manos Con Amor with the mission to empower women and girls in Central America to break the cycle of poverty. The organization specifically works to provide them with a “hand up” in jump starting their projects. The business model consists of purchasing products from women entrepreneurs and using all profits to work with a public school in a low-income neighborhood in Honduras that reaches over 600 under-served students.
And finally, I am a lover of this life - constantly brainstorming new ideas, spending time with my loved ones, and working out to maintain a healthy lifestyle. I am a learner - absorbing teachings from reading, mentors, traveling, and meditating to learn more about myself and the world.
Survivor and Motivational Ambassador
Almost 2 years ago, my life changed in an instant and I was fighting to stay alive. I contracted Meningococcal Disease. I soon realised just how much strength I needed and had no choice but to fight. Using everything I had I continued to fight whilst having several fingers and toes amputated, the loss of four major organs and requiring a kidney transplant. I have had 20 operations in 18 months and back on life support 4 times. I literally had to rebuild my body and I continue to do so. I am dependent on dialysis three times a week in order to survive until I receive a kidney transplant.
As the hits continue to keep coming, I now know this horrid thing called Meningococcal didn’t kill me for a reason despite continually trying. The reason? To help in stopping this from happening to other people. To potentially save lives. To use my strength and willpower to fight and show others what this disease can do to you.
I went through stages of feeling like I don’t fit in, I don’t belong, and I would always think: “who would want to be near me?”
My life has completely changed. I feel my life is now richer in ways as I appreciate living a whole lot more. I want people to know that if you find your inner strength you can fight. You can turn negatives into positives. Don’t sweat the small stuff. You can win. Find that inner Heroism. We all have it.
To be a part of Heroic Humans and an ambassador is something that is not only helping me, but giving me the power to help others to live heroically and live their life to its fullest no matter what you have gone through. It is a group that does not judge, but embraces all. I am beyond proud.
Mental Health Ambassador
The environment is directly impacted by our everyday, simple actions… whether it is a conscious decision to wash with cold water, sort the garbage in the appropriate bin, or choose to invest in an electric car; I strongly believe that every single person has the ability to make proactive decisions to benefit our environment.
My decision has been to work towards reducing global emissions with a focus on electricity, as our society grows into an energy-dependent future. After completing
a BSc in Environmental and Geological Sciences at Queen’s University, I began a two-year journey in Iceland, where I am currently completing a MSc in Sustainable Energy Sciences at Reykjavik University. In doing so, I’ve obtained skills in geothermal surface and subsurface exploration, environmental impacts assessments, and developing financial, investment and profitability structures for various renewable technologies.
Living and breathing the renewable industry in a setting as green as Iceland, and
experiencing such a united community within the nation, has left me truly inspired that the choices are ours to make, and that every decision will make a difference. As a Heroic Humans Ambassador, I hope to initiate conversations and challenge our communities to make environmentally conscious decisions, no matter the scale or setting. Together, we can create a movement and spark meaningful change for our neighbours, friends, and future generations.
Through recent years of growing into an adult I have continued to challenge myself to be a better person. As a gay male I often see prejudice towards myself and the LGBTQ community. The contiuning process of accepting myself, loving myself, and growing my self-esteem has motivated me to help others through this journey. I often times reflect on the judgement that is placed on the LGBTQ community. This, along with other things, has brought me to understand the harshness and consequences of that judgment, and therefore I do my best to accept others and learn from everyone’s differences. I myself have come a long way and hope to gather a communty of Heroic Humans to strengthen this acceptance and to energize the rights of all people and their individualities.
It is the greatest feeling waking up everyday knowing that as soon as your feet hit the floor you are about to make a difference. I spent many years of my life hiding who was I from a world I didn’t know was out there. I struggled with being true to myself in fear of not being accepted by the people around me. I allowed them to hold me captive of my own happiness and emotions. It wasn’t until I allowed myself to be me for me, and not for anyone else, that I truly found happiness. My name is Randi Young, and as an ambassador for Heroic Humans I want to help you find comfort in being you. I want to guide you to be your own hero, every single day.
Heroic Humans is a social impact movement that provides a gathering space for inspiration, celebration and empowerment. We aim to foster connections among heroic people and groups, helping to establish a broader reach and more profound influence on their individual communities. We care about authentic connections and the power behind all people and passions. Let’s join forces and recognize those who make a difference.
Heroism comes in all forms. Whether it’s someone who lights you up, inspires you or others, or pours your favorite cup of coffee; everyone has their own story to tell and a life to change.
With your help, we can uncover raw emotion and vulnerability, overcome adverse conditions, and applaud human empowerment in all its forms.
Submit your Heroic Human and share their impact with us. We’d love to get to know them!
HEROISM LIVES HERE