Nahla has impacted the lives of many! She is an entrepreneur, a passionate people connector, and a fierce natural-born leader. She always diligently finds ways to build and create community by involving and empowering many people around her, especially youths; empowering them to become our future leaders. She served as a board member on many committees, including being a Vice President and Youth Chair for many years at Douglas Park community centre. Nahla is also a recipient of the City of Vancouver Volunteer of the Year award.
“Everything is possible when we open our hearts and minds and truly believe! Others around us will follow, and the collective empowerment is contagious and magical. The forces of the universe will bring miracles to life where every dream becomes reality.”Nahla Hopfe
What has been your favorite experience you love to share?
I feel immensely grateful and blessed to have lived through many incredible experiences. Yet, I have also learned from the most negative and challenging circumstances where every lesson presents tremendous wisdom and growth. The bigger the challenge and obstacle, the more I gather strength and resilience to never give up. The universe is open to miracles when we surrender our will, open our hearts, and truly believe!
Having my first baby was a true testament that miracles are possible. I was strongly advised by my doctor not to get pregnant, as I could die or face life-long serious medical issues. My chances of getting pregnant were also extremely low. I refused to think negatively and left it to the universe. Instead, I chose to think positively daily. I now have two beautiful young daughters. Both pregnancies were very high risk but miraculously went well. I am a very positive person and firmly believe in the power of vividly visualizing my dreams, wishes, and goals. My sense of determination and passion is ignited with every challenge. Our hearts and souls are full of universal powers and energies opening doors to infinite possibilities and potential.
After earning my business degree and finding success in the corporate world, my heart led me to a different path. With my passion for building community and advocacy for equality and multicultural diversity, I found incredible joy in supporting children and empowering youths. To achieve these endeavors, I was passionately drawn to the fulfillment of coordinating community, art, and fashion events as well as successfully fundraising for many causes.
As a firm believer in continuous learning, I returned to school to study education. This ultimately led me to my current career as a behavioural interventionist supporting children, youths, and families dealing with autism. I learn so much from every student and have taken the approach of building on their strengths. This validates my philosophy in life – turn adversity and challenges into opportunities and strengths. As Helen Keller said, “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement.” I am presently writing a children’s book about autism geared to gain children’s knowledge and awareness about autism.
Working with children has taught me to slow down and view the world from their eyes with genuine curiosity and enthusiasm and finding wonder in the smallest things. Children and youth are our future and mentoring, coaching, and empowering them results in building our communities and a better world. As a youth coach, the feeling is beyond magical when I empower and involve youths in an event or a project, and they, in turn, become confident to become leaders and engage others to do the same. The ripple effect is immense!
Some of my favorite experiences involve turning challenges in my community into positive outcomes, something I have done from a very young age. I passionately love connecting people and building community.
The collective strength of community enhanced by the magical and contagious power of group determination and positivity has been the framework in creating outstanding projects with successful outcomes. Two examples – hearing my community outdoor pool was going to shut down was very sad news for many families. Children and youth marched with me to city hall to voice our concerns. As a result of our collective efforts, the decision changed, and the pool stayed open for a few more years.
Another decision was proposed to close a neighborhood library where many families socialized and gained many resources. Many people were devastated. I encouraged people to stand together and make their voices heard and invited the media to share their concerns. The library stayed open for a few more years.
In addition to remaining positive, and determined to rise above every challenge, I have always looked to gain positive outcomes from even the most devastating circumstances. My daughter was in a car accident and suffered a serious concussion. In the process of supporting her, I realized the lack of education regarding concussions, especially in the public schools and soccer fields. I organized concussion specialists to visit several public schools in Vancouver as well as community soccer meetings, sharing valuable information and tips on how to prevent and care for concussions.
To share a most recent example – wondering how I could make a difference during the pandemic where there are many restrictions but perhaps more time to achieve our goals. I always stop, smile, and talk to people on the street but during the last year, I took the time to talk to more people and decided to regularly hand out masks, toiletries, and packaged food to a number of people who I saw regularly on the street. This only took a few minutes but made a huge difference. I’m so grateful to know that two of the women I frequently spoke with decided to go to drug rehab, and another young girl went back to her family whom she hadn’t seen in three years. Sometimes a simple “Hello, how are you?” can go a long way.
We will all face challenges in our lives and also witness others going through difficult times. The fundamental key is having a mindset to stay positive and determined to rise above and turn obstacles into hopeful efforts toward resolution and achievement.
We can’t wait for others to make a change or a difference. I firmly believe that positive expectations can influence how we choose to work towards our goals. Our actions do indeed begin with our thoughts and mindset. The power of believing and positive thinking is the greatest power on earth.
I believe in living life to the fullest and cherishing every moment where the power of nature recharges me and feeds my soul. I don’t let the rain stop me. Instead, I’ll dance in the rain, and encourage others to join me. I smile at strangers and always aim to have a positive impact on people’s lives on a daily basis. I don’t wait for solutions or change to happen, I create change!