Meet the Founder
I'm Tonoa-Community Advocate, Educator, Business Strategist and Conversationist
Holding a Master’s of Science in Criminal Justice and a Bachelors in Project Management Administration, Tonoa Manuel, Founder and Curator of Second Impressions Youth Garden LLC., is on mission to advocate and educate communities on accessibility, sustainability and application. After surviving homelessness and outpatient restraint treatment for suicidal ideation, Tonoa understood the importance of applying resources that assisted in her process of growth, healing, and embracing all of her intersectionality’s.
She has built Second Impressions Youth Garden around the educational model of Restorative Practice, Suicide Prevention and Community Bridging; working with local schools to bridge the gap between youth and families and the communities in which they live. Collectively working with Aurora Mental Health Center’s youth prevention team, Aurora Youth Options, Tonoa has embraced their teams dynamic surrounding community engagement and advocating for youth. In addition supporting their Mentor Team by recruiting adults to work one-to-one in their community based mentoring program assisting youth with life skills, self-development and positive relationships building.
She has gained a tremendous wealth of knowledge while working side by side with several local and regional organization surround community engagement. Second Impressions Youth Garden is not only a community organization but a tool that believes in ensuring that communities are equipped and can gain a wealth of knowledge as it pertains to their communities and the resources that will assist their sustainability and knowledge. Recently chosen to exhibit at TEDXMileHigh: Humankind in June 2019, Second Impressions Youth Garden had the opportunity to show how society can bridge the gap with our differences to elevate and grow to the next level, with their Community Mapping Experience. Tonoa, was recently selected to faciliate a workshop in her role with Aurora Mental Health Center at the upcoming 2020 National Mentoring Summit in Washington, DC.
Gather with SIYG
"Connecting People to People"
"I'm excited to be apart of the CSOP Initiative because if promotes to building genuine relationships with people in our communities to explore and implement effective solutions to civic issues."
Hailima Yates/Luv Mrk/CEO
"I believe in SIYG and helping to ensure the mental gardens of our youth are filled with the right knowledge and wisdom in order for them to harvest the fruit of their talents and skills. I'm inspired by Tonoa, and what she is striving to accomplish with this work."
D.L. Pos Ryant/AOPYO/Executive Director
"This is such a great resource, the people are wonderful and the program is much needed. I had the pleasure of attending one of their most recent events, that was very successful and I can't wait to see the continued growth while building a stronger partnership."
Simone Williams/Denver Public Schools