Our mission is built on the premise that everybody has something valuable to bring to the table.
Julia Berezovskaya, Founder & Chief Inspiration Officer
Julia has been the creative driving force behind Feed Your Friends since it’s inception in 2011. She has always been drawn to work involving youth and has been weaving this into her professional life within the scope of marketing, fashion and television for the last decade. Her multi-cultural childhood experience has been a great source of wisdom involving our societal practices of acceptance and inclusion where linguistic, cultural, and developmental differences are present. She has had a longtime fascination with neuroscience and has made it her personal mission to celebrate neurodiversity, creating a safe haven for people with special needs to be valued contributors in a harmonious day-to-day existence. She prides herself on having assembled a team of likeminded professionals who share the goal of creating a world in which we embrace our differences with courage and understanding. She completed her undergrad at the University of California, in Santa Cruz (GO SLUGS!) and has studied at the Russian University for the Humanities in Moscow. She is a producer, documentarian, and lover of adventures.
Nicole Vieira, Co-Founder & Togetherness Ambassador
Nicole is one of our greatest inspirations. She brings over 10 years of hands-on experience with the special needs community. She has worked in the Malibu and Santa Monica School Districts and has spent over 6 years performing behavior intervention at The Help Group in Los Angeles. Her passion and enthusiasm for kids fuels her ability to create meaningful connections with each student. She is a self-made fitness junkie who has recently shed 95 lbs during her life changing wholeness quest in Puerto Rico. She continues to pay it forward by coaching and supporting those on a similar path. She is a true humanitarian who believes that we should take more responsibility for our constant creative output. She is also an amazing artist that can be found painting faces for some of our favorite celebs.
Noelle Aponte, Program Director & First Impressions Officer
Noelle is best known for her perpetual state of grace. It not only makes her a highly regarded program director and facilitator but also a great surfer! She embodies a sense of peaceful calm in everything she does, even when the current leaves her stuck among sharp rocks. She brings over 12 years of experience working with special needs youth including Special Ed. Instruction, Youth Mentoring, and Camp Counseling to name a few. She has a strong passion for helping others and using a hands-on, creative approach to make learning and teaching both, fun and meaningful. She is a natural caretaker who believes in the importance of nurturing young minds to create a better future. She is also an avid water woman with a passion for travel, art, nature, and great company.
Reshma Dhawan, Communications Wizard
Reshma is a world traveler who started working with special needs youth at Mother Teresa’s Ashram Home for the Abandoned and Handicapped in India. After pursuing a career in Marketing for 3 years, she discovered her souls’ true calling and joined STAR Education. Now, she teaches transition at The Help Group while concurrently completing her credential and Master’s in Education. She brings a tremendous amount of joy to her students each day and it’s unclear who gets the better end of the bargain. Most people don’t know that she’s taught Bollywood Dance, but we know her secret is safe here.
Shivani Dhawan, Grand Master Multitasker
Shivani has worked with kids since her first visit to Mother Teresa’s Ashram in 1998. Over the years, she has taught piano and dance in various after-school programs. She co-founded Cure Sonya and helps manage operations at The Cedars-Sinai Women’s Heart Center. She is working towards her Master’s in Global Health and is participating in operations research in Brasilia, Brazil. She spends her free time spoiling her dog Gobi and takes pride in her healthy, home-cooked Mexican feasts.