In 1994, the Herbalife Nutrition Foundation was created with the vision to give vulnerable children the nutrition they need to reach their full potential. Andreza Elem Damacena da Conceição, a 20-year-old from Brazil, is a testament of what can happen when you invest in a child’s future.
Andreza, who grew up in a Casa Herbalife Nutrition Program, has made her debut as a professional athlete in Madrid, Spain.
“I received encouragement from social workers [from the Casa] to never give up on my dreams,” said Andreza. “They used to tell me to practice more so that I could follow a career that I wanted so much.”
Andreza joined Aldeias Infantis SOS, a Casa Herbalife Nutrition program in Brazil, at the age of six with low weight and anemia caused by food insecurity. Andreza and her 8 siblings received a nutritious and balanced diet from social workers who received nutritional training, provided by HNF grants.
“We didn’t have enough food and my brothers and I ended up at Aldeias Infantis SOS,” Andreza said. “I didn’t have this type of food at home, so I thought I didn’t like to eat it, but I learned to eat all kinds of healthy food.”
Andreza’s heath improved, and she began playing soccer with the kids at the Casa. In addition to education, nutrition, and shelter, the Casa provided support for her to join a soccer program at school and participate in several regional championships.
At 18, Andreza left SOS Children’s Villages, but continued to rely on the Casa’s support. Today, she reaps the rewards of a healthy lifestyle by living out her dreams as a professional athlete.
“I went through a selective to play in Spain and I’m going to play professionally in Madrid,” says Andreza.
Hear more success stories about HNF’s global impact at HerbalifeNutritionFoundation.org.