Feature: Life & Diversity Coach Dania Rivas
Updated: Sep 2, 2021
Dania Rivas, M.Ed., is a professionally trained and certified Co-Active Life & Diversity Coach and owner of WilderLife Coach, LLC—a professional coaching service that specializes in cultivating healthy, inclusive workplace culture for outdoor organizations. Dania is a life coach for QTBIPOC outdoor industry professionals, helping them step into their power and purpose. As a queer, Salvadoreña, Dania knows what it feels like to work in a predominately white, male-dominated industry and feel excluded and unwelcome in a career she passionately loves.
Dania’s journey began working as an Outdoor Educator and Naturalist for conservation-based nonprofits. She cultivated and nurtured a strong connection with nature, her community, and her work. However, over the years, she began to experience toxic and oppressive treatment that many like herself, a queer professional of color, experience in an industry dominated by mainstream outdoor culture. Her story and relationship with nature were deemed different and therefore invalidated and undermined.
Dania began to doubt her abilities, knowledge, culture, and, most dangerously, her connection to nature. She questioned whether she was “outdoorsy” and qualified enough to work in the outdoor industry. She witnessed other professionals of color not only experience the same trauma but leave their positions, and, eventually, the industry altogether. Dania began to feel hopeless, depressed and defeated.
Just when she was about to give up and quit the industry for good, fate intervened, and she discovered the transformational world of Life and Diversity Coaching. In her greatest struggle, she found her power and purpose in this world and pursued professional coaching wholeheartedly. Dania shares her story with other professionals of color and industry leaders in hopes that they, too, can step into their power and realize their leadership potential so that in solidarity, we can enact system-wide change for the betterment of the environment. Her connection with nature drives her passion for doing what she does—heal and empower the individual to heal the environment.
Creating WilderLife Coach, LLC, has been an integral part of her healing process and commitment to anti-racism and exclusion in the outdoors. Coaching is Dania’s contribution to breaking down barriers and saving the environment, and through her life coaching, she helps other professionals of color to do the same.
Dania deeply values community, culture, and connection around nature and firmly believes that diverse representation is vital to our environment and health. Join her.
To support Dania, you can follow her on Instagram (@wilderlifecoach)!
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