About Us > Our Team

Meet Our Peer

Michael Velarde

Mikey Velarde

Teen Peer Support Specialist

My journey is a story of resilience and change. From a young age I dealt with undiagnosed ADHD. I navigated through significant educational challenges that made me feel less than others. These difficulties were heightened by personal hardships during my teens, which deeply affected my self-perception and identity. I carried these emotional struggles into early adulthood. I silently suffered with my pain until it became unbearable. After a period of profound personal reflection, I finally realized it was time for change.

With the unwavering support of family and friends, I began a transformative journey. From overcoming great setbacks in life, to becoming a successful college graduate, my path illustrates the impact of support and inner strength. Now, years into a journey of self-discovery and growth, I am proud of the progress I’ve made. My experiences have equipped me with valuable insights and a personal philosophy: to lead by example and show the possibilities of positive change. I am now committed to encouraging others, sharing a message of hope and the potential for joy in life.

My experiences have equipped me with valuable insights and a personal philosophy: to lead by example and show the possibilities of positive change.

Mikey Velarde, Teen Peer Support Specialist