Today we’d like to introduce you to Caley Versfelt.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
As an advocate for people with special needs, I’ve participated in a lot of organizations. With Special Olympics World Games, I was the receptionist and attended over 80 events. As a correspondent, I interviewed celebrities on the Blue Carpet for Opening Ceremonies and during the World Games in Los Angeles.
Manhattan Beach made me an honorary mayor. I’ve continued as a correspondent at the Media Access Awards and the Reel Abilities Film Festival. I just completed my 3-year term on the Board of Directors for Special Olympics Southern Califonia serving on the PR & Marketing Committee and the Athlete Leadership Committee. I am also a Global Messenger with SOSC speaking at events. I am an International Ambassador for Best Buddies speaking at events.
I am an actress on commercials, television and music videos including Sarah Bareilles’s Armor. I am on A & E’s Emmy Award Winning docu-series Born this Way. In the Easter Seals Disability film Challenge, I acted in Whitney’s wedding and worked as a production assistant on Gia and Dragon. Again, I worked as a PA on You Did What, all produced by John Lawson. This year I will be a production assistant and probably am actor in Lawson’s Disability Film Challenge movie.
I am California’s Miss Amazing Queen. I work at the Entertainment Industry Foundation as their front desk administrator. I started Tides of Kindness to spread acceptance and inclusion. I donate to charities I’m involved in.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
People, when they look at me, have lower expectations because I have Down syndrome.
They often see me as someone with a disability first instead of a person who is similar to them. We are more alike than different. We have hopes, dreams, set goals for ourselves, desire friendships and want to be included. We all need people to believe in us, to believe in our abilities, and give us opportunities.
I used to be shy and nervous to speak publically. I have overcome that and now love new adventures, sharing my personality at events meeting new people and spreading acceptance. I love speaking at events showing we all have abilities.
My mottos are:
“Kindness is Contagious,” “Dream Big and Never Give Up,” and If “We Can Believe it We Will Achieve It.”
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Tides of Kindness – what should we know?
Tides of Kindness is known for Spreading kindness. We specialize in public speaking and clothing that promotes all things that are kind. We are most proud of the excitement of people that purchase our products.
Our logo is a heart with a wave going through it, representing that kindness grows with the tides. What separates us apart from other companies is we celebrate diversity and inclusion through Tides of Kindness.
Caley is available to speak at your events and/or have a pop-up shop.
Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
I would not be where I am today without a community filled with support and my family.
I am lucky to have so many people believing in me and giving me opportunities especially through organizations such as Special Olympics World Games, Special Olympics Southern California, Best Buddies International, Easter Seals, and the Media Access Awards. The Pathway Program at UCLA helped me gain independent living skills and confidence. Born to Act Players has been valuable in developing my acting skills and making me comfortable in front of an audience.
The Jim Mora Family Foundation began my speaking career. Each opportunity builds my confidence and expands my dreams. I am so thankful to Special Olympics for introducing me to being a correspondent. I love interviewing people to learn their story. Best Buddies helped me find my job at Entertainment Industries Foundation. It’s a perfect fit. They teach me new skills and give me more responsibility. They also support my advocacy work and acting career.
I also would not be where I am without the support of all the great people I meet who continually encourage me and appreciate my message of staying positive, loving who you are, and chasing dreams. Kindness is always Contagious!
- Website: tidesofkindness.com & CaleyVersfelt.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: caleys_fanpage
- Facebook: Caley Born This Way
- Twitter: @BigWoman!