Joany helping young people to be their very best
Joany Badenhorst, Australia’s premier female para snowboarder knows from her own life the ups and downs young people face. Now, she is using all that experience to help other young people through her work with Stand Tall – a charity that is helping thousands of our youth with their mental wellbeing. Joany writes on her experiences as an Ambassador for Stand Tall.
Looking back at my very first day with Stand Tall as a volunteer in 2016, I could never have imagined the impact it would have on my life and the way I chose to live it. From the clusters of smiles walking through the doors for the first time, to having my life changed repeatedly by speaker after speaker, I knew I had something to contribute to the movement and to the event.
Considering the incredible community that raised me after my accident, that motivated me and gave me hope for my future, I felt a sense of obligation to share the things that I had learnt through surviving and thriving despite adversity, with those who needed to hear it most. Incredibly, Jeanine and Angie asked me to be an official ambassador and my journey started.
This marked the start of an incredible relationship between me and The PAYCE Foundation. For the last 4 years, The PAYCE foundation has sponsored my role as an ambassador within Stand Tall, enabling me to broaden my reach and extend my time spent with the team in further developing our dream. But like with most things, sometimes you need to be thrown some obstacles to encourage movement. Covid came and brought our plans to expand and grow to an abrupt halt. Luckily, it’s almost impossible to put a stop to people with a mission, and so we hosted our first ever live stream event in 2021. I was able to co-host this event, which reached out to over 200,000 students across Australia. This forced move showed us that our mission doesn’t have to be limited to the students in the theatre.
And so, our 2022 Stand Tall Event was launched with the goal of going regional. For the very first time, we are heading out to Dubbo, Tamworth, and the South Coast to start what we hope will become the first of many regional events. https://www.standtallevent.com/regional-tour
Thanks to the incredible and constant support of The PAYCE Foundation, I can not only join the traveling team to all locations, but also host these events for the very first time.
Life is unpredictable. It is ever changing and ever challenging but if you have the right people in your corner, no dream is unachievable.