First name: 
Maria Alejandra Vanegas

When she was 45 days old, Maria's biological mother decided that she could not take care of her, since she was young and had financial problems, so Maria stayed at her parents' house. At the age of 8 her biological mother and her parents told her about the situations that influenced her adoption (lack of any kind of support and education to her biological mother), and there she understood that unfortunately in her country being a woman was synonymous with vulnerability and suffering. Motivated by this talk, she felt empowered to break stereotypes, practicing martial arts and rugby - sports socially classified as masculine in Colombia - in which she was always one of the best. In her teens she had trouble accepting her physical appearance due to social pressures, suffering bullying, but riding a bicycle to tour the city gave her the power and security she needed to join the fight for girls' and teenager rights in Girls Without Fear, a local foundation. Now Maria wants to become a stronger leader in the community by building a Bike Polo school for girls in Latin America with Girls Without Fear.

Class of: 
NiƱas Sin Miedo