Episode 80



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Mariana Santos

Mariana Santos is the founder and executive director of Chicas Poderosas, a non-profit organization that seeks to transform communities through diverse and representative narratives

Mariana Santos is the founder and executive director of Chicas Poderosas. She is also a broadcast journalist, Ashoka fellow, social innovator, and a swimmer.


Chicas Poderosas is a non-profit organization. With philanthropic and foundation support it grows networks of women, LGBTQIA+ people, people of African descent, migrants and dissidents who transform communities through diverse and representative narratives.

Chicas Poderosas works with both journalists and national and international media. They have impacted more than 10’000 journalists, increasing their leadership and awareness on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) issues. Through the work and training of Chicas Poderosas, innovative and pioneering media outlets have been able to embed this new mindset into their organizations such as inclusive leadership practices, gender and race sensitive journalism, and diverse workforce policies.

Mariana shares a story of how a report of Chicas Poderosas changed the law in support of women’s health. She looks back at her experience in media newsrooms in London and Miami and how that created the momentum for her to fully engage herself in Chicas Poderosas. Having grown the community to a substantial size for the last ten years, she is proud of the impact the organisation has had so far.

Her next vision is exploring a new way of living, closer to nature. She is regenerating a piece of land in the Algarve, in the South of Portugal. Together with friends she is planting trees and is living in tents and hosting meetings under the stars. Her experience so far has been extremely healing and rejuvenating.

Self-care for her means allowing the dance between performance and balance to unfold naturally. Over the years she had realised that we are not built for action only, but that calm and rest are essential for our wellbeing in the long-run. For her, feminine energy is the force that takes care of the softer parts of ourselves and she feels that this healing power is very much needed not only for individuals but also for the system and the planet overall.

This podcast episode is for everyone who seeks inspiration for dreaming big and taking bold action. Mariana is a powerhouse for conscious change and a role model for many.


Holistic Health and Leadership Coach Heidi Hauer shows you how to use intuitive tools and access life-changing mindset shifts that support you in leading an abundant, meaningful and successful life.