My name is Mariana and I'm excited to be the first one to welcome you to our LYLO Family. There is so much to tell you and I'm sure there is, even more, to learn about you and your family!
A little glimpse of who I am, I was born in Colombia and moved to beautiful Texas at the age of eight. I've called Katy my home since 2001 and have created many of my favorite memories here. After graduating from Cinco Ranch High School, I left my home in Katy to attend the University of Texas at San Antonio where I obtained my B.A. in Psychology and Minor in Business Administration. While in college I was also part of Gamma Phi Beta International Sorority. I find it all-important to share with you because my passion for volunteering and our community took shape during my college days. I grew a passion for our philanthropic mission of Building Strong Girls, as we partnered with Girls on The Run. I value this organization and the mission it leads. Along with GOTR I also volunteered with Kinetic Kids and Open T.R.A.I.L. Ranch which focuses on equine therapy. Each of these organizations is doing a splendid job of making a difference.
Coming back to Katy after college, I knew I wanted nothing more than to bring a positive change to my community, to the place I call home.
I share the mentality that you first have to love yourself to then open your heart to love others. I view this concept as the key to having an honest relationship with yourself and the relationships you get to build with others. You are never too young or too old to adopt this mindset and create a new narrative for how you approach the way you see yourself and the world around you.
Last year my team of family and friends helped me host the first Wondering Minds Talk event. This event focused on covering topics about friendships, the self, healthy habits, and more. It was open to young girls and the feedback fueled my passion. Seeing these girls become more comfortable in the space we created and bond was a beautiful thing to witness. I knew that having access to topics that help develop a deeper knowledge about ourselves was a powerful thing. I promised I would work harder for each event, but I felt that ultimately a once a year event would not bring the change I was wanting to provide for our youth.
Months of planning and research led me to the day that I mapped out the vision that made my heart full. LYLO LIFE ACADEMY was born, anxious to share the business plan with my family and friends. That night I went to bed at 3:00 AM in the morning, forcing myself to sleep so I could share the idea with my role model, my MOM.
The academy aims to build a community that focuses on the mental wellness of our youth and all. We do so by organizing events and hosting classes that have a unique layout to educate the youth; parents and role members of the family to cultivate a healthy awareness of each child while building their support system.
We don't stop there! The Academy is also an outlet to create fun content and activities that are available to all and for all.