Even though she is originally from Argentina, Lorena grew up in Brazil, where her family still resides.
She holds a degree in Human Resources, teaching and training adults. Lorena’s passion for leadership started in 1998 when she was managing a training cargo department for Dangerous Goods at TAM Brazilian Airlines, and played a pivotal role as part of the Committee for Latin America overseeing Dangerous Goods cargo.
In 2002, destiny took Lorena to Canada, initially to improve her English skills and advance her career in the Airline Industry. However, fate had a surprise for her in Toronto, where she learned she was expecting a child.
Bryan, her son, was born at 27 weeks of gestation, weighing only 880 grams – a tiny, healthy, resilient baby. Yet, just 10 days later, he faced a severe sepsis infection blood infection, leaving him with numerous complications, including hydrocephalus ( water in the brain) cerebral palsy, blindness, seizures and the necessity of being fed through a g-tube.
In the face of these challenges, Lorena had to give up everything she had dreamed of, on her career and family in Brazil, and decided to stay in Canada where she could access the specialized support required to care or her son’s complex needs.
When Bryan turned 4 years old, he started attending a school for the blind at High Park, and Lorena started a full-time role working at RBC in 2007 to provide a better quality of life for her family. As a single mom, juggling work, doctor appointments and emergencies was not easy, but Lorena has gotten strength and support from the community.
Recognizing the critical gaps in support for individuals like Bryan who reached adulthood, she took action. When Bryan turned 18 years old, Lorena founded a non-profit organization called “Dance to Shine”, that hosted monthly dance nights for young adults and youth. These events featured a DJ with Down Syndrome, offering an inclusive and joyful space.
The lack of support in the system is a real problem, with no affordable or specialized programs for kids, like Bryan, with complex needs.
In 2022, Lorena co-founded a non-profit organization called Bryan’s Place alongside 3 like-minded mothers, creating a vibrant community dedicated to supporting parents of special needs children and their remarkable kids.
In July 2023, Bryan’s Place achieved charitable status. This milestone has ignited Lorena’s excitement for the future, as Bryan’s Place will be able to grow and support the special needs community with affordable programs such as respite, resources for families, funding and other programs like moms camp and holiday celebrations.
Daniela is originally from São Paulo. She holds three bachelor's degrees in Languages and Arts, Education, and Law, along with a Master's degree and PhD in Education. She is currently studying HR at University of Toronto.
In 2018, Daniela’s journey led her to the snowy landscapes of Canada with her family, initially to do a research at University of British Columbia on Inclusion and Equity.
Canada’s charm captured her heart, and she fell in love with the country, from its snow, to its good vine and most importantly, its wonderful people.
Daniela is a mother to three lovely children. Rafael, the aspiring engineer; Gabriel, a passionate YouTube enthusiast; and Isabel, a dedicated ballet dancer. Her husband Mauro is a true multitasker and her unwavering support.
Her daily work revolves around inclusion and equity, and Daniela loves to promote social events that create happy, cherish memories.
Daniela loves Brazilian beaches and Canadian parks; and during the year she lives between Brazil and Canada getting the best of both countries. During the week she commutes between Niagara and Toronto.
Above all, Daniela's heart beats for Bryan’s Place. With a focus on happiness and inclusivity, Daniela and her team are dedicated to forging a brighter future for all children.
Maria is originally from the Dominican Republic. She holds a dentist's degree and also graduated from developmental services work (DSO) and personal support work (PSW ) degrees.
In 1996, Maria came to Canada with her son Brayan, who has autism and developmental delay. Her motivation? To provide better opportunities for her son.
Seven years later, Maria welcomed her second child, Michael, who faced health challenges of his own, including developmental delay due to growth hormone deficiency. As a single mother, she put her life on hold to dedicate herself in full to her children.
Today, Maria is a part of "Bryan’s Place," an organization offering support to families with special needs. Her story is a testament to a mother's boundless love and her commitment to a brighter future for all families.
Maria Ramirez's journey embodies courage, love, and sacrifice, showing us that a mother's love knows no limits.
Alecsandra is originally from Recife, PE, Brazil. She holds two Bachelor's degrees in Language Arts and Education, a Post-certificate in Applied Linguistics to the English Language and a Diploma in Creative Advertising.
In 2018, Alessandra embarked on a life-altering journey, relocating to Toronto, Canada, alongside her two sons. Her motivation? To provide them with the promise of better life opportunities in a new land brimming with potential.
However, fate had its own course chartered for Alecsandra. In the early days of the pandemic (early 2020), she received the diagnosis that her oldest son had ASD and ADHD. This revelation, though daunting, would become a catalyst for her extraordinary journey.
In her search for understanding and support, Alecsandra found solace in a remarkable group of parents - kindred spirits who shared the profound experience of raising special needs children. Among them were two exceptional individuals, Lorena Sinato and Daniela Mossini.
These three amazing women faced tough challenges together and held onto their strong hope. They worked as a team to create Bryan’s Place Charity, a shining light of hope and help for families with special needs in Toronto. Together, they are navigating the journey of inclusivity, empathy and awareness.
The challenge is great, but Alecsandra believes that, together, these families are stronger. Together, these families are not just navigating the journey; they are pioneering it. In their shared journey, they have discovered a wellspring of strength and resilience that transcends individual struggles.
Aleksandra’s story is a testament to the incredible impact that emerges when individuals unite with purpose and determination. Her journey embodies the spirit of empathy, hope, and collective strength, serving as an inspiration for us all.
Join Alecsandra and the incredible team at Bryan’s Place as they continue to light the way for special needs families, proving that together, we are indeed stronger.
Lorena is originally from Mexico City, where she lived until 8 years ago. Her career is Business Administration, dedicated to the Printing sector, controlling and managing the Engineering and Graphic/Structural Design area.
In 2013, her second daughter, Luisa, was born in Montreal and had a complicated birth and no answers due to being born without strength. She was the main reason, along with her husband Jorge and Julian, her first child to return in 2015 to live in Toronto. And look for new answers and better conditions for the development of her children.
Luisa was diagnosed in Mexico with cerebral palsy, the first of many diagnoses that would come. She has been in physical and occupational therapy since she was 2 months old, and in 2018, she was diagnosed with a very rare genetic syndrome (GAND-GATAD2B). Until that time, there were 50 children around the world, most of them in the United States of America. Today, after 10 years with other diagnoses of developmental delay and autism, walking since 3 years ago, she is a happy girl and loved by her entire family.
Faced with such a current and future challenge, Lorena's dream would be to have a lifelong school for Luisa where she feels free to develop her potential and participate with her peers in an environment of care and fun. Since, due to the complications, the future of our children is special, so we must create different desires.
In May 2022, Bryan's Place became the first step to reaching the dream of having support for children in the near future and being able to help their families go through this difficult and different path that they face.